Articles & Insights

For an individual in an entry-level position, the path to leadership has several checkpoints along the way.

Rising through the ranks: Ascending to management and leadership

January 18, 2016 -

For an individual in an entry-level position at an organization who aspires to rise through the ranks, the path to executive leadership – and claiming his or her very own chair in the C-suite – has several checkpoints along the way.  (more…)

A list of some of the most notable leadership and management books of 2015.

Notable leadership and management books of 2015

December 31, 2015 -

In a recent two-part article series, we took a look at some professional resolutions that could help corporate leaders kick off 2016 on the right foot. The motivation and sense of potential that a new year brings can prompt many people to seek out books related to their resolutions – guides to weight loss, collections of financial tips, pointers on becoming more organized, to name but a few – and those who aspire to bolster their leadership skills are no exception in this regard. Forbes and The Globe and Mail both recently published lists of notable business books that came out in 2015, many of which contain insights and advice that could prove useful to executives eager to better themselves from a professional standpoint in 2016.

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Professional resolutions are just as important as personal ones going into 2016.

Professional resolutions for 2016, part two

December 30, 2015 -

With the year quickly drawing to a close, many people are making personal resolutions intended to benefit their lives and the lives of those around them in 2016. The end of the year is also a time when executives should be thinking about their professional resolutions – namely, ways to improve upon themselves as leaders and bolster their companies’ operations. Coming up with meaningful and inspired business-focused resolutions can be tricky, so in part one, we put forward the following ideas:

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What are your professional resolutions for 2016?

Professional resolutions for 2016, part one

December 29, 2015 -

The month of December is filled with merriment in many cultures and faiths, drawing to a close with a period that involves both reflecting on the past and planning for the future as the Western calendar prepares to flip over to a new year. It’s said that January was named after the Roman god Janus, who had two faces – one looking forward to the year ahead and one looking backward at the year that had recently come to an end. With that in mind, it’s fitting that this time of year is when many individuals make resolutions intended to improve their lives and those of the people around them.

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A great deal of logistics management goes into ensuring gifts arrive in time for the holidays.

Preparations for – and lessons from – the 2015 holiday shopping rush

December 28, 2015 -

The winter holidays often prove to be a trying yet lucrative period for companies in the retail industry, as well as their partners and vendors. One weak link in the supply chain can bring down an executive’s carefully laid plans like a house of cards, rendering items out of stock and on back order at the most inconvenient time for consumers. Conversely, executives who are overly optimistic about demand may find themselves exiting the holiday season with surplus stock and disappointing revenues.

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All of the individuals on Fortune's Businessperson of the Year List have made their mark.

Deconstructing Fortune’s Businessperson of the Year List, part two

December 24, 2015 -

Fortune Magazine recently released the 2015 iteration of its Businessperson of the Year List, which weighed a number of aspects such as profit and revenue increases, corporate stock performance, shareholder returns, ratio of debt to capital, strategic initiatives, business influence and leadership style.

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Fortune recently released its 2015 Businessperson of the Year List.

Deconstructing Fortune’s Businessperson of the Year List, part one

December 22, 2015 -

As the year draws to a close, publications such as the Harvard Business Review and Fortune are beginning to release their annual rankings of standout corporate leaders.

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Companies with distinctive corporate cultures are at an advantage when it comes to hiring.

Considering culture can make or break recruitment success, part two

December 17, 2015 -

In part one, we went from A to Z on the corporate spectrum – literally – by contrasting the hard-driving work environment at Amazon with the depressurized culture at Zappos. In a recent piece for the Harvard Business Review, brand-building expert Denise Lee Yohn asserted that both types of workplaces are valuable due to the fact that they’re distinctive, and companies with distinctive cultures are at an advantage when it comes to hiring because it’s easy for recruiters to determine whether a prospective employee will be a good fit or a fish out of water.

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How would your employees describe your company culture?

Considering culture can make or break recruitment success, part one

December 16, 2015 -

It’s hard to overstate the importance of corporate culture. In just one example of just how critical company culture can be, a March study conducted by OfficeTeam found that two-thirds of surveyed human resources managers believed their organizations had lost employees as a result of cultural mismatches that left professionals who looked perfect on paper struggling to assimilate in reality. Some enterprises dedicate a lot of time and money to building strong, purposeful corporate cultures, but those that don’t still have a culture of sorts – whether positive or negative – even if they’re unaware of it.

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Boosting the number of female leaders makes good business sense.

4 steps toward rectifying gender inequality in the C-suite

December 14, 2015 -

The number of women in the American workforce exceeds that of men, but you wouldn’t know it by looking at the gender breakdown among members of the C-suite.

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What leadership traits can get executives to the top of the corporate ladder?

What traits are key for successful leadership? (Part two)

December 11, 2015 -

In part one, we detailed a number of traits identified as crucial for leadership success by executives and other business experts such as Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, author and business consultant Peter Economy, Insureon CEO Ted Devine and Skybox Imaging CEO Tom Ingersoll. In part two, we add a few more voices to the conversation.

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What traits make corporate leaders - and their companies - truly great?

What traits are key for successful leadership? (Part one)

December 10, 2015 -

There are almost as many different opinions of what makes a good executive as there are leaders and business experts. We took a look at a few of these individuals’ outlooks, mixing examples and insights from both world-famous leaders and people who aren’t quite household names – or, at least, not yet.

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We compiled a list of questions that leaders may want to ask themselves.

4 questions leaders should ask themselves regularly

December 3, 2015 -

For leaders, it can be all too easy to get bogged down in the day-to-day rituals associated with running a business. Often, executives are so tied up in everything going on that they are unable to step back and look at the big picture – and even those who recognize the need to do so may not know where to start. We compiled a list of questions that leaders may find helpful in terms of taking the first step.

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Make sure your next executive hire goes on to become an unforgettable boss.

How to be – and choose – an unforgettable boss

December 1, 2015 -

During the executive search and recruitment process, companies may come upon multiple strong candidates. Choosing the best of the bunch typically requires widening the scope in order for an individual’s on-paper accomplishments and qualities not to be the only aspects taken into consideration.

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Lars Rebien Sorensen of Novo Nordisk topped the latest iteration of HBR's 100 best-performing CEOs list.

What lessons can be learned from HBR’s 100 best-performing CEOs list?

October 23, 2015 -

The latest iteration of the Harvard Business Review’s list of the 100 best-performing CEOs in the world, published in HBR Magazine’s November 2015 issue, incorporated some new elements. This led to a dramatic shakeup, causing some CEOs’ rankings to plummet and others to skyrocket.

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What will you leave behind?

October 20, 2015 -

What kind of legacy will you leave behind?

For many, board service is the pinnacle of their career – a reward of sorts for a job well done. Regrettably, few board directors think about the day they retire, let alone their legacy in the boardroom.

The idea of legacy is a deeply powerful way to align one’s current board service to the company’s long term objectives. Asking “what do I want to leave behind?” rather than “what do I need to do to comply?” expands our thinking about board succession. It offers a concrete sense of purpose in choosing how to plan for your succession and who to elect to succeed you.

What will you leave behind? A guide to creating your legacy in the boardroom will take you through creating a board succession plan that looks to the future instead of maintaining the status quo. Click here to download.

What do modern-day executive expats look like?

Breaking down the modern-day expat executive experience

October 6, 2015 -

Many executives travel for business, but some go a step further, relocating to a new country for months or even years. Employers eager to give these professionals every chance to succeed supply them with a range of resources intended to help them not only assimilate, but flourish. However, in the end, it’s executives themselves who determine whether they succeed or fail in their expatriate roles.

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In the search for a CIO, some skills are non-negotiable.

4 must-have skills of a modern CIO

September 14, 2015 -

There are a whole host of factors involved in the executive search and recruitment process. Some are relevant across the board, such as solid references, a good reputation and leadership skills, while others are more specific – for instance, expertise in a particular field. This equation is further complicated by the fact that every company comes with its own unique set of needs, and an executive with a high likelihood of thriving at one enterprise has the potential to crash and burn at another. That being said, in spite of the vast number of variables at play, it is still possible to make some generalized assertions to help streamline and optimize the executive recruiting process.

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What does the future hold for a family business? Succession plans have the answer.

Making family business succession plans a success

August 7, 2015 -

Family-owned businesses are known for many things, but spanning generations isn’t necessarily one of them. In fact, a recently released EY Global report noted that the majority of family businesses fail to stay operational for more than one or two generations before closing their doors for good, although there are some that beat the odds. (more…)

Not all leadership lessons can be taught in the classroom.

Leadership lessons you don’t learn in school, part two

June 24, 2015 -

In part one, we introduced the idea that although grade schools and postsecondary educational institutions are instrumental in equipping students with the tools they need to succeed in the workforce, some lessons can’t be taught in the classroom. Instead, they are learned on the job – or, as leadership coach and advisor Roy Osing phrased it, “in the trenches.”

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There are some leadership lessons you don't learn in school.

Leadership lessons you don’t learn in school, part one

June 19, 2015 -

Grade schools and postsecondary educational institutions play an important role in preparing people to go out and succeed in the “real world.” Such an assertion is virtually indisputable – but no matter the industry students join when they leave school and enter the working world, they’ll probably realize there are some things that simply can’t be taught in the classroom. Rather, these aspects must be learned in the field and on the job. (more…)

People love social media, so why isn't corporate social networking more popular?

Leaders are responsible for bolstering enterprise social network use

June 12, 2015 -

Over the past decade or so, social networking has revolutionized how society communicates. It seems as if almost everyone has a social media presence these days, from friends and family to celebrities and even CEOs of well-known companies. (more…)

How do individuals in the health care sector climb the ladder to CEO?

Could these 5 health care executive recruiting trends be the antidote for high turnover?

June 11, 2015 -

Changes in the C-suite can have a profound effect on an entire organization, regardless of the industry in which the enterprise operates. If the right selections are made, the overall impact will be positive, but the wrong choices may result in negative fallout. It could be said that the stakes are especially high for organizations in the health sector – after all, for these enterprises, the term “life or death” isn’t just a figure of speech. (more…)

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Do you have the right CEO for your current business climate?

June 9, 2015 -

Some private equity firms make investments that span a variety of industries, while others may focus on one specific sector. Each sector has its own defined expansion and contraction periods, and a CEO who excels at managing their companies during one phase of the cycle may not be the best person for the job in a different cycle. (more…)

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2015 Talent Plans in the Oil & Gas Industry

May 27, 2015 -

The recent plunge in commodity prices has made business planning a challenge for leaders of oil and gas companies who are unsure what the future holds. At times like these, companies often look to the executive search industry for guidance, so it came as no surprise when a number of our clients approached us with questions about market trends in this age of uncertainty. (more…)