The holy grail of executive search is identifying and hiring exceptional leaders. This recent study by McKinsey & Co assesses the early moves of CEOs with outstanding track records and identifies some valuable lessons for leadership transitions.
Exceptional CEOs are:
1. Twice as likely to have been hired from outside the company
2. More likely to conduct a strategic review early in their tenure
3. Less likely to undertake organisation redesign or management reshuffles in the first 2 years of office.
New CEOs face enormous challenges as they start assembling a management team and setting a strategic direction in today’s volatile environment. To provide some guidance for transitioning CEOs, we looked at the experiences of exceptional CEOs, those defined as the very top performers in our data set of roughly 600 chief executives at S&P 500 companies between 2004 and 2014.