River Currents

Modern Leadership Skills in India’s Family Owned Businesses

Posted by Gavin Fenn-Smith on Apr 12, 2016 11:29:57 AM

We conducted a study to capture current leadership development and succession trends involved in passing the baton from the current generation of India's Family Owned Business (FOB) leaders to the next. 

Here is what the research revealed.

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Topics: Growing Leaders

Remembering Andy Grove: A Perspective on Leadership, Innovation & Culture

Posted by Oliver Sommer on Mar 29, 2016 12:53:56 PM

Andy Grove’s passing last week has already elicited many tributes and rightfully so he lived a remarkable life—the early part was characterized by survival. In his words: “By the time I was twenty, I had lived through a Hungarian Fascist dictatorship, German military occupation…a variety of repressive Communist regimes, and a popular uprising that was put down at gunpoint… Some two hundred thousand Hungarians escaped to the West. I was one of them.” He went on to become Intel employee number three and eventually rose to become CEO and Chairman. His tenure as CEO was marked by unparalleled success for Intel characterized by a compound annual growth rate of almost 30% but also featured several near failures that Intel was able to overcome.

In the vernacular of The River Group, Andy Grove was someone “who got it.” He had the ability to blend his views on leadership, strategic planning and execution with a talent framework that enabled Intel to thrive during his tenure. Three particular aspects of his legacy—his personal leadership, focus on innovation, and Intel’s adaptive culture—provide a unique perspective on how he built one of the most successful companies in the world during his tenure.

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Topics: Advising CEOs, Growing Leaders

Leadership Lessons from West Point

Posted by Oliver Sommer on Feb 17, 2016 10:11:35 AM

The River Group convened a group of CEOs at the United States Military Academy at West Point to discuss the findings of Exchanges16. Each of the CEOs had participated in the study which focused on the experience of being the CEO including from different vantage points (first time, new, established and retiring or exiting). While the discussion was rich and helped River better shape the output of our study, one of the great benefits was the location of the forum and the inherent connection to our discussion topic— especially as it related to the journey of becoming a CEO.

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Topics: Growing Leaders

The Single Most Powerful Word in a Leader’s Vocabulary

Posted by Ana Maria Sencovici on Jan 5, 2016 9:18:38 AM

Much has been written about communication, especially leadership communication. There are tips on how to listen more, there are best practices around having difficult conversations…there is no shortage of suggestions on how to use verbal and body language to be more effective.

Yet I’ve found that one word has more power, more leverage, than any other. One word can help leaders not only become more effective but also shift their mindset towards one of inclusivity and innovation. That word is AND. It’s one of the most used, simple three letter words out there—yet, in the right context, it’s magical.

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Topics: Growing Leaders

Do No Harm:  What Senior Executives Can Learn from Doctors

Posted by Ana Maria Sencovici on Dec 1, 2015 10:20:44 AM

Most organizations would love to have passionately engaged employees. But how does that happen? How can leaders speak to their sense of purpose? How can leaders truly unleash the potential of their people and harness it towards fulfilling the organizational mission?

Clearly enough people deem these questions critically important, as evidenced by the sheer amount of time and money dedicated to answering them. From culture change initiatives, and work-life programs, to novel ways of leveraging technology and new KPIs to track engagement efforts…everyone is seeking a leg up in the race to retain and maximize the contributions of their people. Some of the brightest minds are eager to answer these key questions, creating entire ecosystems around their respective solutions. It’s competitive advantage 2.0.

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Topics: Growing Leaders

The Nature of Leadership in the UAE

Posted by Gavin Fenn-Smith on Nov 17, 2015 10:25:18 AM

The UAE is fast being recognized as an important regional economy, and influential global participant. The local airlines are global powerhouses. Tourists know it as a must-see destination. Real estate and manufacturing continue to attract local and global investors. 

Abu Dhabi 2030 and Dubai Expo 2020 are evidence of the far-sighted ambition of the UAE. But to realize that ambition, the UAE need many more leaders. Nation-building is tough work, and it is leaders who take on the challenge. 

There is a need to improve leadership expertise in the UAE, but its development must conform to local cultural norms.

 

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Topics: Growing Leaders

The Rise of Conversational Leadership

Posted by Gavin Fenn-Smith on Nov 2, 2015 9:18:46 AM

Conversational Leadership is a more open and personal style of leadership. Leaders enact it themselves and try to institutionalize it throughout the organization so that they create a more collaborative and inclusive culture. 

It is a style of leadership with dialogue as its defining feature. In a modern, networked world, leaders recognize that it is an essential ingredient for sound decision-making, innovation, and powerful employee engagement. Employees entering the workforce expect to be heard. Social media is everywhere. And everyone has a voice. 

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Topics: Growing Leaders