Chanda Kochhar, CEO ICICI Bank, 2nd largest Bank in India:
1) "I think one of the big challenges for leaders today is that windows for effective execution have gotten smaller. The world today is so volatile that just about anything you need to implement has to be done in 90 days or even 30 days, or it risks becoming irrelevant."
2) "Getting that mix right—thinking strategically and staying close to execution— is the essence of the CEO’s job."
Daniel Vasella, Chairman Novartis:
3) "Every CEO needs someone who can listen—a board member, an adviser, a partner—someone to whom he can speak in total confidence, to whom he can say, “I’ve had it.” You need someone who understands and can help you to keep the balance.“
4) „Leaders often forget the importance of stable emotional relationships—especially outside the company. It helps tremendously to manage stress. Your partner will do a lot to help keep you in sync."
Interview with McKinsey, January 2012
Larry Fink, Chairman and CEO Blackrock:
5) "The skill set each firm needs is consistency of message surrounded by a very strong, deep culture. I think culture in this day and age, with this quick news cycle, is even more important than ever before.“
6) „Culture and the principles surrounding a culture start with leadership. It starts in the way you conduct your business as an executive or as the executive team."
7) „You know, there are many more dreams out there, than there are success stories. The ratio of dreams to success stories is very, very skewed. And the reason is that success is about consistency and living up to the dream by being comprehensive in how you execute."
Interview with McKinsey, August 2012
Carlos Ghosn, CEO Renault-Nissan:
8) "Leaders of the future will also need to have a lot more empathy and sensitivity—not just for people from their own countries, but also for people from different countries and cultures. They are going to need global empathy, which is a lot more difficult.“
9) „It is a paradox: on the one hand, you have to be more confident and secure, but on the other, you have to be a lot more open and empathetic. You need to listen, but when you make a decision, that’s it—you must be a very hard driver. Usually, these are not attributes you find in the same person.
10) „Once you have done the analysis and made the decision, then you have to learn to simplify the decision in communicating it to others. Everything is complex, but sometimes you need to simplify the matter so much that it’s almost a caricature. You must say, “Nothing matters beyond this.” You must reduce everything to zeros or ones, black or white, go or no go. You can’t have too much nuance.“
11) „In a crisis, you have to be able to do all of these things—listening, deciding, and simplifying—very quickly. That is what makes leading in a crisis so interesting. And because you have to move so fast, you have to empower people to make decisions themselves."
Interview with McKinsey, August 2012
DeeDee Wilson, CFO at Aritzia:
12) “Too often, women are focused on technical training, believing that if we are really good at our jobs, we will ultimately be rewarded. I think finding your voice as a leader is perhaps more important than getting more proficient in your technical role as you are moving higher in an organization."
13) Don't assume that if you overwork, do work for others, accept low-profile assignments, never give your opinion, take no breaks and put your personal life on the back burner, that you will ever be noticed, appreciated or promoted.
14) Self confidence (28%), Emotional Intelligence (25%) and hard work (23%) are the most mentioned reasons for a successful career development. 41% say, that career requirements have negative impact on their family life. 39% are looking for another job. For 40% of the employees the career has slowed down since becoming parents.