- OCT 2012
We may be happy to eat the food that multinationals make, and fly in their aircraft, and even take the pills they have invented. But many of us say we don’t trust corporations, and we don’t trust the people who lead them. Some are even willing to go out onto the streets to make this clear. It seems to me that now is the time for corporations and their leaders to be more explicit and transparent about their purpose and goals.... Continue Reading ...
- AUG 2012
We all know bad managers – be they ambitious and aggressive, doing whatever it takes to move up the corporate ladder, or the opposite: managers thrust into their position without the skill or the will to do the job properly.
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- MAY 2012
Service lies at the heart of business. This truth has long been acknowledged and celebrated. Indeed, Peter Drucker said that creating a customer was the function of business. In the 1980s the customer service movement was loudly hailed by the likes of Tom Peters and Philip Crosby. SAS's Jan Carlson talked of moments of truth, the times when customers came to face-to-face with frontline staff.... Continue Reading ...
- MAR 2012
This has been very much a leadership couple of months for me – with the World Economic Forum Council on the ‘Future of Leadership’ and indeed our own research on leadership at the Future of Work Consortium. So over the next couple of weeks I plan to talk about what we have found. ... Continue Reading ...
- MAR 2012
Power can be isolating. Although people often seek power in the pursuit of feeling loved and valued, the powerful often find true love elusive. The moment a subordinate or fan tries to get close may be the very moment in which power-holders become cynical of others, and this can heavily impact relationship development. ... Continue Reading ...
- FEB 2012
Sport is a crucible of leadership. Walking out to play at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United, and you will be faced with an average of 75,110 faces. Unless you are wearing the red of the home team, you are unlikely to be given a friendly reception. Sport gives leaders a moment to decide, a choice of clear paths and sporting leaders – from Joe Montana to Tom Brady of the New England Patriots; Sir Bobby Charlton to John Terry; Douglas Jardine to Andrew Strauss – are celebrated and examined from every angle. But perhaps the greatest sporting leadership story of all time features a politician: Nelson Mandela.... Continue Reading ...
- FEB 2012
It’s a surreal place. Picture 2000 people in a mountain resort packed into a conference centre for five days. Weird things are going to happen… and they do. Here is my personal pick of the top 10 weirdest things that happened to me at Davos this year:... Continue Reading ...
- FEB 2012
The financial crisis marked the end of a long period of growth in the developed world. This year at Davos the mood was of realism and growing recognition that the going ahead would require more resilience and fortitude than anything many executives had previously encountered in their careers. It’s going to be a long haul.... Continue Reading ...
- JAN 2012
Davos may be full of leaders – but that does not stop them questioning how their roles could change. The pervading theme this year is of extraordinary change and challenge – ‘ we don’t have a moment to loose’; ‘we have to do things differently’; ‘this is a moment in history’; ‘there is a crisis of consent’ are phrases I’ve heard from academics, CEO’s and politicians.... Continue Reading ...
- DEC 2011
As a student, Steve Jobs came to believe that if he ate only fruits he would eliminate all mucus and not need to shower anymore. It didn't work. When he got a job at Atari, given his odour, he was moved into the night shift. This exposed him to video games and business. Some years later he founded Apple (of course in a garage) and now Jobs is a legend.... Continue Reading ...
- SEP 2011
Are the people in your organisation good at collaborating across boundaries? Do you have effective ways of building and delivering cross-unit offerings? I know of no large company where the answers to these questions are an unequivocal yes. But increasingly cross-unit collaboration is becoming a critical strategic imperative, and a lot of companies are actively seeking out new ways of raising their game in this area.... Continue Reading ...
- SEP 2011
We all know that big, established companies struggle to respond to "disruptive" change. Blockbuster, HMV, Nokia, and Yahoo! are all current examples of companies who are struggling with this problem – they are trying to adapt, but are being held back by powerful and often invisible inertial forces. ... Continue Reading ...
- AUG 2011
In my leadership classes I argue that individuals can make a difference – even in the largest organisations. Apple is a global business – rated earlier this year as the world’s most valuable corporation - yet it is impossible to make sense of the enterprise without understanding one person: Steve Jobs.... Continue Reading ...
- AUG 2011
It is scarcely an exaggeration to remark that Barack Obama’s first real leadership role turned out to be President of the United States – before that it was all politics, speechifying and activism. Actually, you could say much the same thing about Nelson Mandela, whose political leadership experience was very thin before they locked him away. Perhaps we can make too much of leadership track record, what matters is are you the right man or woman for the times? ... Continue Reading ...
- JUL 2011
Events are moving so fast that no-one knows how things will end up, but there's no question that most News Corp shareholders would like News Corp to divest its UK newspapers. ... Continue Reading ...
- MAR 2011
On Monday evening (February 28) I had the privilege of meeting Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London 2012 Olympic Games Organizing Committee (LOCOG), to discuss the business of the 2012 Olympics before an audience of fellow graduate students at London Business School.... Continue Reading ...
- FEB 2011
Leaders have a very poor track record of leaving office with good grace and their reputations intact. In politics, think of Mrs Thatcher’s departure.... Continue Reading ...