I read a news story today that made me think of a book that the content team at TechRepublic recently discussed. The article was called “Choosing tech’s heirs with care,” and the book was “Good to Great,” by Jim Collins. Overall, I think this is an excellent book for people who are interested in the topic of executive succession.
The book originally examined 1,435 companies that were selected by the Fortune 500 between the years of 1965 and 1995. After four cuts, the study focused on 11 companies that made the transition from good to great. All of these companies had Level 5 Leadership, which is a person who “Builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will” (p. 20).
Some of the comparison companies, in contrast, had charismatic leaders who helped make the company popular but who failed to build a strong foundation that helped the company endure when they were no longer at the helm.
Would you rather follow a charismatic or a humble leader?