Leadership & Management: Power & Influence

52 Results

 

Family CEOs Spend Less Time at Work

CEOs who are related to the owners of family-owned firms work significantly fewer hours than nonfamily CEOs, according to a new study by Raffaella Sadun and colleagues. This is in light of the fact that longer working hours are associated with higher productivity, growth, and profitability. Open for comment; 16 Comments posted.

Lessons from the Lance Armstrong Cheating Scandal

Clayton S. Rose's recent case study looks at the behavior of teammates who were swept up in Lance Armstrong's cheating scandal. When do followers need to break away from their leader? Open for comment; 4 Comments posted.

Is Your iPhone Turning You Into a Wimp?

The body posture inherent in operating everyday gadgets affects not only your back, but your behavior. According to a new study by Maarten Bos and Amy Cuddy, operating a relatively large device inspires more assertive behavior than working on a small one. Closed for comment; 20 Comments posted.

Developing the Global Leader

The shift from a country-centric company to one more global in its outlook will have a radical impact on leadership development, says Professor of Management Practice William George. Closed for comment; 15 Comments posted.

Book Excerpt: Indispensable: When Leaders Really Matter

In his new book, Indispensable: When Leaders Really Matter, HBS professor Gautam Mukunda addresses the question of whether leaders create history or are created by it. Read our excerpt. Open for comment; 4 Comments posted.

Why Most Leaders (Even Thomas Jefferson) Are Replaceable

Leaders rarely make a lasting impact on their organizations—even the really, really good ones. Then out of the blue comes a Churchill. Gautam Mukunda discusses his new book, Indispensable: When Leaders Really Matter. Closed for comment; 20 Comments posted.

Earnings Management from the Bottom Up: An Analysis of Managerial Incentives Below the CEO

Many studies as well as anecdotes document a link between the structure of chief executive officer (CEO) compensation and various measures of earnings manipulation. In this paper, HBS professors Oberholzer-Gee and Wulf analyze all components of compensation packages for CEOs and for managers at lower levels in a large sample of firms over more than 10 years, between 1986 and 1999. Results suggest that the effects of incentive pay on earnings management vary considerably by both type of incentive pay and position. Overall, it appears that the primary focus of compensation committees on equity incentives for CEOs overlooks a critical component in curbing earnings manipulation. If one wanted to weaken incentive pay to get more truthful reporting, diluting bonuses-particularly that of the chief financial officer (CFO)-would be the place to start. This may be the first study to analyze the relationship between CEO, division manager, and CFO compensation and earnings management. Read More

The Power of Leadership Groups for Staying on Track

Twenty-first-century organizations are breaking with traditional command-and-control hierarchies to develop a new generation of values-centered leadership, argues Professor Bill George, author of True North. The best way to get there? True North Groups. Open for comment; 5 Comments posted.

Are You a Level-Six Leader?

Asking the question, whom do you serve? is a powerful vector on which to build a useful typology of leadership. Visiting professor Modesto Maidique offers a six-level Purpose-Driven Model of Leadership ranging from Sociopath to Transcendent. Closed for comment; 78 Comments posted.

Why Leaders Lose Their Way

Dominique Strauss-Kahn is just the latest in a string of high-profile leaders making the perp walk. What went wrong, and how can we learn from it? Professor Bill George discusses how powerful people lose their moral bearings. To stay grounded executives must prepare themselves to confront enormous complexities and pressures. Closed for comment; 77 Comments posted.

Moving From Bean Counter to Game Changer

New research by HBS professor Anette Mikes and colleagues looks into how accountants, finance professionals, internal auditors, and risk managers gain influence in their organizations to become strategic decision makers. Open for comment; 12 Comments posted.

What CEOs Do, and How They Can Do it Better

A CEO's schedule is especially important to a firm's financial success, which raises a few questions: What do they do all day? Can they be more efficient time managers? HBS professor Raffaella Sadun and colleagues set out to find some answers. Closed for comment; 67 Comments posted.

To What Degree Does the Job Make the Person?

Summing Up: Jobs shape us as much as we shape our jobs, Jim Heskett's readers suggest. Closed for comment; 41 Comments posted.

Will I Stay or Will I Go? How Gender and Race Affect Turnover at ‘Up-or-Out’ Organizations

Gender and racial inequalities continue to persist at "up-or-out" knowledge organizations, making it difficult for women and minorities to advance to senior levels, professor Kathleen McGinn says. Read More

John Kotter: Four Ways to Kill a Good Idea

Every visionary knows the frustration of pitching a great idea, only to see it killed by naysayers, say HBS professor emeritus John P. Kotter and University of British Columbia professor Lorne A. Whitehead. In an excerpt from their new book, Buy-IN: Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down, the authors reveal strategies used by your critics—and how to defend against them. Read More

Customer Experts Lose Influence When Teams are Pressured

Group dynamics can take a bad turn when a team feels heightened pressure from stakeholders. In this Q&A, HBS professor Heidi K. Gardner explains why performance pressure makes team members do what seems irrational: defer to high-status "generalist" experts while ignoring colleagues close to the client. Read More

Power Posing: Fake It Until You Make It

Nervous about an upcoming presentation or job interview? Holding one's body in "high-power" poses for short time periods can summon an extra surge of power and sense of well-being when it's needed, according to Harvard Business School professor Amy J.C. Cuddy. Closed for comment; 22 Comments posted.

From Bench to Board: Gender Differences in University Scientists’ Participation in Commercial Science

Does gender affect whether a university scientist will be invited to work with for-profit companies? Indeed it does. A new paper finds that male professors receive more opportunities than their female counterparts to join scientific advisory boards and start new companies. Research, focusing on the biotechnology field, was conducted by Haas School of Business professor Waverly W. Ding, MIT Sloan professor Fiona Murray, and HBS professor Toby E. Stuart. Read More

The Drive to Acquire’s Impact on Globalization

Humans have evolved four priorities or "drives," according to HBS professor emeritus Paul R. Lawrence: the drive to acquire, to defend, to bond, and to comprehend. In an excerpt from his new book, Driven to Lead: Good, Bad, and Misguided Leadership, Lawrence describes how the four drives impact globalization. Read More

The End of Chimerica

For the better part of the past decade, the world economy has been dominated by a unique geoeconomic constellation that the authors call "Chimerica": a world economic order that combined Chinese export-led development with U.S. overconsumption on the basis of a financial marriage between the world's sole superpower and its most likely future rival. For China, the key attraction of the relationship was its potential to propel the Chinese economy forward by means of export-led growth. For the United States, Chimerica meant being able to consume more, save less, and still maintain low interest rates and a stable rate of investment. Yet, like many another marriage between a saver and a spender, Chimerica was not destined to last. In this paper, economic historians Niall Ferguson of HBS and Moritz Schularick of Freie Universität Berlin consider the problem of global imbalances and try to set events in a longer-term perspective. Read More

Walking the Talk in Multiparty Bargaining: An Experimental Investigation

Talk can unite, but it can also divide. In multiparty bargaining, communication can focus parties on a fair distribution of resources, but it can also focus parties on a competitive distribution of resources. As HBS professor Kathleen L. McGinn and coauthors Katherine L. Milkman and Markus Nöth show through experiments, at the onset of interaction the dominant logic in discussions—be it fairness or competition—strongly influences the equality of payoffs even in complex, full-information multiparty bargaining. Increases in the relative frequency of talk about fairness are associated with payoffs closer to an equal split. Talk about competitive reasoning has the opposite effect, driving payoffs away from an equal division, though these effects are less consistent than fairness talk effects. The researchers' results add critical insights to our understanding of the role of communication in multiparty bargaining. Read More

Authority versus Persuasion

In directing employees, managers often face a choice between invoking authority and persuasion. In particular, since a firm's formal and relational contracts and its culture and norms are quite rigid in the short term, a manager who needs to prevent an employee from undertaking the wrong action has the choice of either trying to persuade the employee or relying on interpersonal authority. In choosing between persuasion and authority the manager makes a cost-benefit trade-off. This paper studies that trade-off, focusing in particular on conflicts that originate in open disagreement. Read More

Professional Networks in China and America

While American managers prefer to separate work and personal relationships, Chinese counterparts are much more likely to intermingle the two. One result: Doing business in China takes lots of time, says HBS professor Roy Y.J. Chua. Read More

Beyond Gender and Negotiation to Gendered Negotiations

How does gender affect negotiations within organizations or rather how do organizations affect gender relations? Deborah Kolb, a professor at Simmons College School of Management, and HBS professor Kathleen McGinn explore how definitions of work, specified roles in organizations, status hierarchies, and the politics and practices of organizational realities affect how gender plays out in organizations. Considering gender in organizations from a "negotiated order perspective"—that is, from the perspective that cultural patterns and work practices are the result of past interaction and negotiation—not only expands the range of issues that are potentially negotiable, it also turns attention to rethinking certain dimensions of the negotiation process itself. Read More

The Seven Things That Surprise New CEOs

In the newly released book On Competition, Professor Michael E. Porter updates his classic articles on the competitive forces that shape strategy. We excerpt a portion on advice for new CEOs, written with HBS faculty Jay W. Lorsch and Nitin Nohria. Read More

Are Followers About to Get Their Due?

Online forum now closed. Leadership may be much-discussed, but followership merits equal attention, suggests HBS professor Jim Heskett. As a follower, what advice would you give other followers who want to have an impact on their jobs and organizations? As a leader, what do you do to foster good followership? Closed for comment; 77 Comments posted.

Has Managerial Capitalism Peaked?

Summing Up. Professor Jim Heskett considers his reader's comments on the growing imbalance between what John Bogle terms managerial capitalism and owners' capitalism. Closed for comment; 30 Comments posted.

How Much of Leadership Is About Control, Delegation, or Theater?

Forum now closed. Summing up the many responses, Jim Heskett says that the mix of control, delegation, and theater employed by successful leaders depends on timing and circumstances. "The strongest messages I received were that if leadership involves control, it is only over setting an organization's course and priorities." Closed for comment; 127 Comments posted.

HBS Cases: Beauty Entrepreneur Madam Walker

She may have been the first self-made African American millionaire. Born of emancipated slaves, Madam C.J. Walker traveled from the cotton fields to business fame as a purveyor of hair-care products that offered beauty and dignity. Harvard Business School's Nancy F. Koehn and Katherine Miller explain what motivated her triumph. Read More

Learning from Failed Political Leadership

Strategic independence and better leadership assessment—these are the critical issues for both business and government in the future, says Professor D. Quinn Mills. In this Q&A he describes key lessons from his new book, Masters of Illusion, coauthored with Steven Rosefielde. A book excerpt follows. Read More

Who Rises to Power in American Business?

Business leaders in the United States have usually been white men who were blessed with the right religion, family, or education. But "outsiders" have also created their own paths to leadership, a trend on the rise today. Paths to Power is the first book in fifty years to exhaustively analyze the demographics of leadership and access in business in the U.S., and how the face of American leadership might be changing. A Q&A with Anthony J. Mayo. Read More

Organizational Response to Environmental Demands: Opening the Black Box

How and why do organizations respond differently to pressures from different stakeholders? This question is central to organizational theory and feeds into strategic management research as well. Delmas and Toffel develop and test a model that describes why organizations respond differently to similar stakeholder pressures. They suggest that differences in how organizations distribute power across their internal corporate departments lead their facilities to prioritize different institutional pressures and thus adopt different management practices. Read More

How Important Is “Executive Intelligence” for Leaders?

Leadership talent is enjoying a perceived "seller's market," says Jim Heskett. As we select and train future leaders for all levels of our organizations, how much effort do we really spend assessing executive intelligence as opposed to personality and style? What do YOU think? Closed for comment; 97 Comments posted.

Oprah: A Case Study Comes Alive

Writing a business case on the icon of daytime television and chief executive of a major media empire was challenge enough for HBS professor Nancy Koehn and colleagues. Oprah Winfrey's visit to campus to talk with graduating students made it ample reward. Read More

Making Credibility Your Strongest Asset

Dealmakers often forget the power of a good reputation. In this article from Negotiation, HBS professor Michael Wheeler tells why having a storehouse of credibility will put you head and shoulders above the competition. Read More

What Perceived Power Brings to Negotiations

What role does "perceived power" play in negotiations? For one thing, it may help all the parties take away a win at the table. Professor Kathleen McGinn discusses new research done with Princeton’s Rebecca Wolf. Read More

Reinforcing Values: A Public Dressing Down

Often the hardest part of a turnaround is improving bad interpersonal behavior in the organization. A Harvard Business Review excerpt by professors David Garvin and Michael Roberto. Read More

Governance and CEO Turnover: Do Something or Do the Right Thing?

CEOs who become "entrenched" by the board of directors can gain an extra buffer between themselves and angry shareholders. Entrenchment has potential costs (a poorly performing CEO hangs on to the job) but also benefits (the board can deflect shareholder cries for dismissal of a CEO who was merely unlucky). The authors hope to shift the emphasis of the debate on entrenchment to a consideration of these tradeoffs and to shift the focus of the entrenchment-performance discussion toward the decisions, such as CEO dismissal, that are directly tied to the actions of the board. Read More

The New CEO’s Wrong Message

Any new CEO who tries to wield power unilaterally will pay for it, according to Harvard Business School professors Michael E. Porter, Jay W. Lorsch, and Nitin Nohria. An excerpt from Harvard Business Review. Read More

The Watsons: IBM’s Troubled Legacy

For over seventy years, Thomas Watson Sr. and Thomas Watson Jr. shaped and built IBM. In a new book, Professor Richard Tedlow explores the complex relationship between father and son. Read More

What Great American Leaders Teach Us

A new database on great American leaders offers surprising insights on the nature of leadership. A Q&A with Tony Mayo, executive director of the Harvard Business School Leadership Initiative. Read More

Women Leaders and Organizational Change

Merely expanding the number of women in leadership roles does not automatically induce organizational change. Harvard professor Robin Ely and Debra Meyerson call for fundamental changes to transform organizations. Read More

A Fast Start on Your New Job

Your first ninety days in a new position are fraught with peril—and loaded with opportunity. HBS professor Michael Watkins explains how to get a running start. A Q&A and book excerpt. Read More

How New Managers Become Great Managers

Newly minted managers must commit themselves to lifelong self-improvement. Read an excerpt from HBS professor Linda A. Hill’s update of her classic, Becoming a Manager. Read More

The Irrational Quest for Charismatic CEOs

Companies reflexively look to charismatic CEOs to save them, and that's a bad idea, says HBS professor Rakesh Khurana. In this excerpt from his new book and in an e-mail interview with HBS Working Knowledge, he explains how the CEO cult arose. Read More

High-Stakes Decision Making: The Lessons of Mount Everest

On May 10, 1996, five mountaineers from two teams perished while climbing Mount Everest. Is there anything business leaders can learn from the tragedy? HBS professor Michael A. Roberto used the tools of management to find out. Plus: Q&A with Michael Roberto Read More

Four Keys of Enduring Success: How High Achievers Win

What is success to you? HBS professor Howard Stevenson offers insights from research he and HBS senior research fellow Laura Nash are conducting on the meaning of success for high achievers. Read More

Secrets of the Successful Businesswoman

What are the secrets of successful women in business? In separate keynote talks, Gail McGovern, a recent pick as one of Fortune magazine's fifty most powerful women in corporate America, and HBS professor Nancy F. Koehn laid out the facts. Read More

Looking for CEOs in All the Wrong Places

In searching for a new CEO, many companies depend on board contacts to find candidates and diminish the role of search firms. And that may be a big mistake, suggests HBS assistant professor Rakesh Khurana. Read More

How to Compete Like a Judo Strategist

Movement, balance, and leverage: Savvy executives use these principles to compete every day. In this excerpt from their new book Judo Strategy: Turning Your Competitors' Strength to Your Advantage, HBS professor David B. Yoffie and research associate Mary Kwak reveal five techniques of the masters. Read More

Machiavelli, Morals, and You

What do a butler and a prince know about leadership? A lot more than you would think, as MBA students in Harvard Business School’s course The Moral Leader find out. Here is how they use great literature to become better leaders.
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