Dealing with a top team who cannot deal with change

The latest edition of the McKinsey Quarterly Journal has a very interesting article by Derek Dean on  a CEO’s guide to reenergizing the senior team.  Dean focusses on what Chief Executives should do to bring about a new focus in their top team when all around them is changing at an unprecedented pace. At times like these, a CEO has to be able to rely on their best leaders. But do these leaders have the ability to support the CEO?

Some key lessons that stuck with me after I read the article include:

  • What may seem to be the quick solution – i.e. to replace an executive who cannot cope with the pace of change – can result in the organisation unnecessarily losing key skills, knowledge and experience
  • The CEO needs to engage with his/her executives on an emotional level with those facing fear or in denial
  • Executives who have been successful in the past can be the worst at dealing with failure because they have never had to learn from past failures

You have to register with the McKinsey Quarterly to view the article but it is free and definitely worth it.  Thanks to Bob Sutton for the lead to this article.

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