Authors: Linda D. Sharkey, Nazneen Razi, Robert A. Cooke and Peter Barge
Publisher: McGraw-Hill, 2012
ISBN-13: 978-0071790512, 266 pages
Management experts Linda D. Sharkey, Nazneen Razi, Robert A. Cooke and Peter Barge acknowledge the common characteristics and competencies of good leaders but argue convincingly that global leaders need additional, unique skills. The authors have sufficient impressive knowledge of global business to write knowingly about global leadership based on their experience alone. Yet this work stands out because they add their analysis of past and new research, including surveys and interviews with some 150 global leaders, and they use that data to test their assumptions.
This uncluttered, interesting read includes new, useful and, in one case, even surprising findings. Of course, the authors offer the inevitable global leadership basics, but they present these core concepts in a succinct, relevant way as they build toward a logical, evidence-based framework that features practical tools and guidelines for developing global leaders. getAbstract recommends this book to board members, executives, leadership development experts, HR officers, and actual and aspiring global leaders.
Global organizations and their leaders
Good leaders are vital to the success of any firm, but globalization is driving the demand for a new breed of “transglobal leader.” Such leaders are in short supply, because they need deeper skills than domestic leaders, and those skills are hard to identify and take time to develop. Good domestic executives frequently fail when posted to foreign assignments, because unfamiliar settings greatly amplify the fast-paced, interconnected and complex nature of modern business. Unlike in the past, when expatriate leaders had time to adjust to new surroundings, today’s global leaders must navigate cultural, political and language barriers very quickly or risk the loss of local talent, reputation and crucial relationships.
Multinational organizations often believe they are global, but most aren’t. To develop global leaders for foreign assignments, first seek global thinking at the top. Evaluate your board and executive officers. Do they have similar backgrounds? Do they come from the same place? Did they get promoted with little or no global experience? Or, do they have a genuine “global mind-set?” Do they reside almost exclusively in their home country? Do most important decisions originate at the home-nation headquarters? Do the leaders of the main business units – legal, human resources, finance, marketing, sales, and the like – reflect the countries and regions where the company does business? International organizations without a global outlook at the top can still compete for and even develop top global leaders, but a head office that can’t relate to or understand those leaders’ way of doing business is likely to curtail their effectiveness.
Despite the need for good global leaders, firms lack a reliable framework for assessing current talent accurately and recognizing or developing the right leaders. Today’s companies select global leaders from the ranks of successful executives at home, and while that logic is sound, the results are mixed. Firms need assessment tools and models that can help them identify potential global leaders early in their careers and better select current leaders for foreign assignments. To identify the elements of such a framework, you need a clear understanding of the “six facets of intelligence” that global leaders share…