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10 Trends: A Study of Senior Executives

In 2007, researchers at the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL®)asked 247 senior executives around the globe about 10 leadershiptrends in business. The goal was to assess these trends, theobstacles they create, and their potential impact on leadingorganizations. The results show some important patterns thatfocus on talent, innovation, collaboration, and globalization. Senior executives face increasingly com-plex challenges that involve organiza-tional changes, market dynamics and tal-ent shortages. One popular response to increasing complexity is to lean on inno-vation. Our respondents believe that aiming for innovation through overt processes (systems and structures) and talent development is paramount to cre-ating a culture that is agile enough to address complex challenges.
Talent (and talent development) is another consistent theme. Organizations must create pools of candidates with high leadership potential and give them the space to reach their personal goals. Interestingly, most organizations do not have a well-defined succession plan in place to develop the next generation of senior leaders. Further, most leaders agree that the next generation of leaders will place unique demands on their organization. Senior executives suggest that success relies on flexibility in recruiting, developing and retaining talent.

The next question is: How do leadersneed to lead? Our sample predicts thatfuture success will depend on the abilityto collaborate and focus on the teamrather than the individual leader. But lessthan half of the executives surveyedbelieve leaders in their organization arehighly skilled in collaboration. One ofthe obstacles facing those in charge ofdevelopment is that collaboration is anelusive term ranging from technology-driven skills to team development tointerpersonal understanding.

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Posted on:2016-02-17