spotlight

Senn Delaney President and CEO Jim Hart discusses the importance of cultural agility in a HubCulture interview at World Economic Forum in Davos.

Enjoy our latest at your best newsletter. It features our new CEO view from the top video on leading culture with Belgacom CEO Dominique Leroy. Also in this issue, findings of our new study on organizational mindset, and a new CEO report from a year-long global research partnership between Saïd Business School, Oxford, and Heidrick & Struggles.

How do CEOs develop the skills they need to lead in an ever- changing world? To answer that question, Senn Delaney's parent company, Heidrick & Struggles, partnered with the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford to conduct in-depth interviews with more than 150 CEOs representing a wide range of sectors around the world. Findings are published in The CEO Report, one of the most comprehensive, in-depth studies of CEO leadership capabilities.

The longest-serving CEO of a Fortune 500 company, Les Wexner, CEO of L Brands, was recently honored with a lifetime achievement award by Chief Executive Group. Senn Delaney Chairman Dr. Larry Senn examines the leadership traits that Wexner demonstrates, including passion, growth mindset, a benevolent leadership shadow, humility and a higher purpose of doing good while doing well that have contributed to making him one of the best CEOs of the century. Senn also shares Les's insights on leading, winning together, and shaping the L Brands' culture.

To help you, your team and your organization thrive this year, we are pleased to share the best of our 2014 thought leadership and interviews by CEOs on leading culture transformation. Please do share them with your colleagues. Warmest wishes for 2015!

align senior team

aligning the executive team is a critical first step

Leading the culture is as important as leading the strategy and structure


Culture shaping is a leader-led process. Research shows that starting at the top is critical because organizations tend to become Shadows of their Leaders. A deliberate process to create a mutually supportive, high-performance team at the top may be an obvious priority when a new CEO comes into an organization, when the executive leadership of two merging companies are brought together or during an executive-level restructuring. But the need for alignment may not be as clear in other situations even though even minor dysfunctions at the top may be obvious to the organization and mirrored down below.

 

Because leading the culture from the top is so important, we have developed special expertise in working with CEOs and their senior teams to help take them to a higher level of performance and effectiveness. We have done this with CEOs and senior teams of nearly 100 Fortune 500 companies and dozens of teams at the top of Global 1000 companies.


Watch this video of our client, Yum! Brands CEO David Novak, as he shares insights on creating an iconic recognition culture that drives global performance and growth

 

Novak describes how with Senn Delaney's guidance, he focused on building a recognition culture across 117 countries and 1.4 million employees where everyone makes a difference. Senn Delaney Chairman Dr. Larry Senn also examines why Novak exemplifies a thriving leader and shares lessons for other CEOs to successfully lead culture transformation.




 

 

Most senior teams have highly qualified and successful individual contributors but many are not as effective as a team as they could be.

 

In our most successful culture-shaping engagements, CEOs and their senior teams

  • understand the connection between culture, strategy and business success
  • role model the healthy, high-performance behaviors they want in their organization
  • learn what it takes to shape a culture, and their role in it
  • are seen by the organization as aligned on decisions and mutually supportive
  • make decisions for the greater good not in self interest

This creates the foundation for the work needed under the senior team to create a healthy, high-performance culture from top to bottom. (See engage full organization)