Focus Areas of CEOs in their Middle Phase

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Focus Areas of CEOs in their Middle Phase
Jaap de Jonge, CEO, Netherlands, Editor
One can roughly distinguish 3 periods in the tenure of a Chief Executive Officer according to Zemmel, Cuddihy and Carey.
In the first year or so in office, they are typically involved in assessing and diagnosing the situation of the company, formulating a vision and a strategy, and establish some initial wins, building trust and legitimacy.
In the last year or so of their tenure, they are mainly concerned with selecting a successor and smoothly handing over the helm.
Not much is written about a CEO's middle phase. Interesting new research by Zemmel c.s. has revealed that in this second, intermediate period CEOs mainly occupy themselves with 5 themes:
  • KEEP RAISING THE LEVEL OF AMBITION: Keep up the pace of organizational change, guard against organizational exhaustion, continue to focus on the change external environment.
  • ATTACKING SILOS AND BROKEN PROCESSES: Tackle ingrained practices, develop cross-functional (cross-business) talent, adjust co...Sign up



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