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Executive Management and Leadership

Yesterday we looked at how past emerging markets can offer valauble lessons to European leaders amid the crisis in Greece. Today, we focus on how the turmoil in the eurozone is affecting European CEOs, and what lessons executives can take away from the recent financial crisis in the U.S. and the situation in Greece.

As Greece assembles an interim unity government to lead during its ongoing financial crisis which has nearly toppled the Greek government and raised serious questions about its future in the eurozone, are there vital lessons European leaders can learn from Latin America?

Changes in board governance are creating opportunities for executives with certain backgrounds and experience. In our most recent webinar a panel of top search consultants from across Europe and the US shared their insights into the current movements and how best to take advantage of them.

Current Hiring Conditions and Trends

The situation differs slightly across Europe but major trends are a move towards recruiting more women onto boards and candidates with international experience. What is being sought is a diversity of ideas, experience and geography.

It is understandably difficult to predict the business environment of the future, and it may possibly be unwise to try to do so. The past couple of decades have seen changes that have emphasized why this is so difficult to predict and plan for – huge advancements in technology, changes in the global political landscape and economic turbulence have characterized this time and are often impossible to forecast.

Therefore it may be the case that the leaders of the future will have to work in similar times of change – a situation that would require them to be adaptable in the way that they work and manage people.

“Here is the fact of the age. People believe nothing. They believe everything is spin and lies."
- Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal

As we head into November and approach the end of the year, to say 2011 has been a volatile year for the global trust scale would be an understatement. From the Arab Spring and the Eurozone crisis to tumultuous partisan politics in the U.S. driving the economy to the brink of disaster, and the Occupy Wall Street movement gaining momentum worldwide, this is a year that has tested the limits of the concept of trust itself.

Anne Morriss identifies 5 ways that potential leaders, many of them highly talented individuals, create their own obstacles to achieving their potential:

1) Over-emphasizing personal goals

Leadership is not about you, it is about making other people better as a result of your presence. If you can make sure certain systems and cultures are in place, you can also ensure that people succeed even when you are not there. Those who succeed as leaders are those who have managed to shift the analytic focus from themselves to other people.

2) Distracted by personal image

In honor of the official American Business Women's Day on September 22nd, and the invaluable contributions female executives have made to global business, BlueSteps have launched an 'Executive Women in Business' Initiative for the month of September. We will be featuring content focused on the personal experiences of top female executives and the lessons learned along the way.

Take a look below at the last article submission by a BlueSteps member who won a competition to submit their stories of progression as women in business:

"No Glass Ceiling. Just Blue Sky". I must admit, Marcy Blochowiak’s book title summarizes my thoughts well! It may be an aspirational statement anywhere in the world, particularly in India, but I would like it to remain on the table.

It is well known that the focus on Women Leadership is driven primarily by two strong pillars - The Business (CEO’s Office) and The Function (HR). It is moving due to pressure from the global eco system from a "good to have" to a "must have". Diversity is increasingly a business imperative that is being watched by both the shareholders and the Board. With this hawk eye, it is not surprising that these pillars are focusing even more extensively on this space.

Everyone has their own ideas on which values and ideals are important in achieving your business goals. In this article I will share the thoughts of various leaders on which of these values are overrated, as recently feature by the Harvard Business Review.

Jonathon Gosling – Professor, University of Exeter Business School