Resilience: The Most Important Executive Skill Not on Your Radar

A colleague and I met with a CEO late on a Friday afternoon to talk about her direct reports and to make some important decisions that would determine the configuration of her team. The CEO had gone through a long week and looked haggard and distracted. She rambled on about some topics and cut others short before giving them proper consideration. She went off on tangents, repeated some questions, and asked us to go over basic issues more than once.

CEOs of Private Equity–Backed Companies: Leveraging Insights from High-Performing Teams

Upgrading talent is a necessity identified by most CEOs as growth ramps up. This comes as no surprise. However, what is less evident is how that talent should be organized and deployed against a strategy, starting with the top team. Hiring a stronger supporting cast (e.g., a new CFO or chief product officer) may help, but too many management teams are suboptimized due to factors that extend beyond talent. We see many portfolio company CEOs wrongly assume that filling important talent gaps will automatically result in a performance bump.

Developing Leaders: Ambition and Mindfulness Meditation

Successful executive development requires significant and sustained ambition. Mindfulness meditation can be an important tool in examining that ambition and making it a fuel that sustains the senior leader’s development. Through mindfulness meditation, leaders can have a clearer picture of themselves and the goals they want to achieve, and they will be better able to focus on effective strategies for achieving those goals.

Talent Development: Building a Diverse Talent Pipeline

How do you build a diverse talent pipeline? Few would disagree that talent development occurs within an organizational context. This argues for a more holistic or systemic approach to our talent development efforts that simultaneously facilitates growth and change across multiple stakeholder groups including the individual, their manager, and the enterprise.

Talent Development: A Major Concern for Organizational Health and Success

While it is abundantly clear that talent is a major concern for organizational health and success, few organizations have cracked the code on the people-development front. There are many reasons for this, including cost of development, piecemeal approaches and practices, fast-evolving talent needs in disruptive environments, talent sourcing, high-potential identification, and the efficacy of executive development practices.

Are Your Employees Connected to Customers?

Many companies want employees to maintain an external focus so that they stay connected to customers’ needs or preferences. For marketing and sales people, this is automatic given their role responsibilities. What about employees who don’t have natural interactions with customers? Too often, these individuals—whether they are from manufacturing, finance, or other support functions—become overly focused on internal problems and issues. They fail to understand the importance of staying current on customer or industry trends.

Work Tips: What Do Cold Weather and an Old Car Have to Offer to Introverts?

I’m from Chicago, where everyone knows we have notoriously cold winters. During one such winter—on those particularly frigid mornings—I sometimes drove to work with my parka zipped up for the first 15 miles while waiting for the car heater to come on. I eventually realized I could be more comfortable if I warmed up the car before I started my journey. So what does that have to do with introverts and work? Let me explain.

Clash of Cultures: A Challenge Few Businesses Have Solved

One of the most significant talent challenges of our time is the integration of new capabilities and diverse perspectives into an established company culture. Whether it is the entrepreneurial technologist we want to hire to transform our business, the experienced multicultural leader we need to guide us in geographic markets, or the very real economic need to build leadership teams that reflect the diversity of our markets, the reality is the same.


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