Leaders and Strategies in Real Life: 5/21/19

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Instead of studying leadership, why not spend some time studying leaders and strategies in the wild? You can learn a lot from leadership experts, but you always see the leader and what he or she does through the expert’s personal lens. Supplement that learning with studying real leaders in real life situations and draw your own conclusions. The posts in this series will help you.

Every week I’ll point you to articles by and about real leaders in real situations and to articles about how real companies are faring in the marketplace. Read them. Think about them. Draw your own lessons and conclusions from them. Then try to apply those lessons in your own real life.

This week I’m pointing you to articles about Douglas Murray, Ken Allen, WOW Air, Clarke Murphy, and Stephanie Houston.

From Douglas Murray: Lessons Learned In Five Years As A First-Time CEO

“I recently celebrated a personal milestone: five years as CEO at my company. When I joined the company, I was a first-time CEO. Experiences will vary across organizations and personalities, but there are key lessons I learned that I believe are transferable to any CEO.”

From Ken Allen: The Former CEO of DHL Express on Leading the Company Through an Existential Crisis

“It was November 2007, and DHL Express was facing an existential crisis. Our performance across all major markets was deteriorating, and without a fundamental overhaul, our losses were posed to threaten the profitability of the entire Deutsche Post DHL Group. Three hundred and fifty company leaders had gathered in Cincinnati to confront this challenge head-on.”

From Wharton: WOW Bows Out: Lessons from the Downfall of a Budget Airline

“The collapse of Iceland’s WOW Air, which abruptly ceased operations and stranded passengers last week, came as no surprise to experts who were watching the discount carrier’s operations and said it was on an unsustainable path.”

From Adam Mendler: One On One With Clarke Murphy, CEO of Russell Reynolds Associates

“I have spent almost my entire career at Russell Reynolds Associates, working in multiple countries, and holding ten different roles over the years. Given all that change, it has not felt like one company or one job, but a multitude.”

Thanks to Smartbrief on Leadership for pointing me to this story.

From the London Business School: In conversation with Stephanie Houston from WeWork

“At London Business School’s 2019 HR Strategy Forum, Stephanie Houston, WeWork’s director of talent acquisition for Europe, Israel and Australia, took part in a conversation with Julian Birkinshaw, professor of strategy and entrepreneurship, on the topic of leading transformation and the imperative to innovate.”

For some ideas about how to get more from this series of posts, check out “Studying Leaders in the Wild.

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