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Category Archives: CEOs

Potentates and politicians

There remains a lot of confusion, including from sources where you wouldn’t ordinarily expect it, about what a CEO really is. There is a persistent inclination to see the CEO as, essentially, the company. He or she is viewed as an all-powerful figure who issues orders which are expected to be obeyed. Consider this recent […]

Roundup: Taking responsibility

During the past week of panicked news about the latest turn taken by the cancerous credit crisis, stories of this one being potentially worse in some ways than the Great Depression have fanned concern. Of course, it only stands to reason that it would turn out to be the same week I found myself reading Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road,” a physically and spiritually exhausting post-apocalyptic journey of a search for salvation and hope. A disorienting coincidence. . .

Who is responsible?

In the past few weeks I have attempted to present some challenges to the traditional notion of the singular individual leader as essential and singular sources of leadership for our modern organizations. The highly regarded and experienced leadership expert and author, Lee Thayer, who also offers his insightful thinking at The Leader’s Journey, has done us the service of pointing out an apparent discrepancy in the unfolding of my argument. . .

Succession planning

There remains a lot of concern about how poorly succession issues are planned and implemented in organizations of all sizes and types all around the world. It is one of those areas where the civilian community can learn a lot from how the military works. There are three key things. To the extent one of them isn’t being done, the entire effort’s worth to the organization is placed at risk. . .

Willpower and leadership

Much is made of the importance of follow-through. In particular, the strength of will shown by leaders in the face of stubborn resistance and seemingly insurmountable obstacles can seem to be essential to snatch victory from defeat. However there is a flip side to that which is revealing. This is a good subject for displaying why the military may not really be the great source of inspiration it’s cracked up to be for how to be a leader in other fields. . .