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The CEO Next Door: What It Takes to Get to the Top and Succeed, Based on the World's Most Comprehensive Leadership Study

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Drawing on a data-base of over 17,000 leaders, as well as thousands of hours of interviews with CEO candidates, business consultants Elena Botelho and Kim Powell overturn the myths about what it takes to achieve the corner office, and reveal the common attributes and hidden insights to success that have helped over 6 million CEOs land their jobs --and what we can apply to Drawing on a data-base of over 17,000 leaders, as well as thousands of hours of interviews with CEO candidates, business consultants Elena Botelho and Kim Powell overturn the myths about what it takes to achieve the corner office, and reveal the common attributes and hidden insights to success that have helped over 6 million CEOs land their jobs --and what we can apply to our own careers. Everything we thought we knew about what it takes to get to the top is wrong. You must graduate from an elite college or business school. In fact, only 7% of the CEOs of today's companies went to a top school -- and 8% didn't graduate college at all. Given how cuthroat the competition to get to the corner office, you can never suffer a career detour or make a major mistake. In fact, on average, people who have become CEO's have had five to seven career setbacks on their way to the top. When most of us think of a CEO, we tend to think of companies in the Fortune 100, or 500, or if we're being particularly generous, the Fortune 1000. In fact, however, there are over 6 million CEO's of companies in America today with under 500 employees. And the overwhelming majority of those CEO's did not go to Harvard, attend Wharton or Stanford Business School, or the University of Chicago. Some are immigrants; many worked their way up through the ranks from entry-level positions. They DO however, share certain attributes, as Botelho and Powell have discoverd over the years from their work with CEOs and by mining their company's research and data banks. The people who become CEO's are decisive -- they may not always make the best decision, but they make the best decision they can based on the information they have at the time; they are reliable -- they deliver exactly what they promised to deliver, on time, without exception.


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Drawing on a data-base of over 17,000 leaders, as well as thousands of hours of interviews with CEO candidates, business consultants Elena Botelho and Kim Powell overturn the myths about what it takes to achieve the corner office, and reveal the common attributes and hidden insights to success that have helped over 6 million CEOs land their jobs --and what we can apply to Drawing on a data-base of over 17,000 leaders, as well as thousands of hours of interviews with CEO candidates, business consultants Elena Botelho and Kim Powell overturn the myths about what it takes to achieve the corner office, and reveal the common attributes and hidden insights to success that have helped over 6 million CEOs land their jobs --and what we can apply to our own careers. Everything we thought we knew about what it takes to get to the top is wrong. You must graduate from an elite college or business school. In fact, only 7% of the CEOs of today's companies went to a top school -- and 8% didn't graduate college at all. Given how cuthroat the competition to get to the corner office, you can never suffer a career detour or make a major mistake. In fact, on average, people who have become CEO's have had five to seven career setbacks on their way to the top. When most of us think of a CEO, we tend to think of companies in the Fortune 100, or 500, or if we're being particularly generous, the Fortune 1000. In fact, however, there are over 6 million CEO's of companies in America today with under 500 employees. And the overwhelming majority of those CEO's did not go to Harvard, attend Wharton or Stanford Business School, or the University of Chicago. Some are immigrants; many worked their way up through the ranks from entry-level positions. They DO however, share certain attributes, as Botelho and Powell have discoverd over the years from their work with CEOs and by mining their company's research and data banks. The people who become CEO's are decisive -- they may not always make the best decision, but they make the best decision they can based on the information they have at the time; they are reliable -- they deliver exactly what they promised to deliver, on time, without exception.

30 review for The CEO Next Door: What It Takes to Get to the Top and Succeed, Based on the World's Most Comprehensive Leadership Study

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lorilin || thegoodbug

    Holy smokes, this book is packed with good information. I'm not looking to become CEO of anything, but I learned a bunch about leadership just the same. The book is divided into three sections: preparing yourself for the job, getting hired for the job, and succeeding at the job. The sections are further divided into chapters, and then the chapters are divided into very clear and succinct snippets of advice. So in Section 1, you learn how important it is to make decisions faster, build relationsh Holy smokes, this book is packed with good information. I'm not looking to become CEO of anything, but I learned a bunch about leadership just the same. The book is divided into three sections: preparing yourself for the job, getting hired for the job, and succeeding at the job. The sections are further divided into chapters, and then the chapters are divided into very clear and succinct snippets of advice. So in Section 1, you learn how important it is to make decisions faster, build relationships through everyday routine, and be reliable. In Section 2, you learn to use disasters to your advantage, make yourself visible to the right people, and make yourself memorable. In Section 3, you learn how to troubleshoot common issues, build the right team, and manage your time and energy in the most efficient way possible. There are so many tidbits that I found useful in this book. I really liked the section in the beginning about common misconceptions about CEOs (No, they aren't all extroverted. No, they weren't destined for greatness from a young age. No, they don't all come from Ivy League schools.) I liked the section on giving an effective apology. I was surprised by how important reliability is; even when CEOs didn't get something right, just showing up day in, day out helped them be good leaders. I was comforted by the fact that so many successful CEOs have NOT gotten everything right the first time around. Many have faced disasters and responded poorly, but then learned from the experience and grown stronger. Persistence and reliability seem to go a long way in leadership roles... In short, I loved this book. It's engaging and very useful, even to people not in the business world. ARC provided through Amazon Vine. See more of my book reviews at www.bugbugbooks.com.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Monnie

    I DID NOT READ THIS VERSION OF THIS BOOK - I chose the wrong one for my "currently reading" list and cannot find a way to get rid of it. That said, here's the review of the version I DID read: Back in the Dark Ages when I conducted employee development seminars on variety of topics, I made it a point to provide participants with a take-home list of resources - mostly books. If I made such a list today, for sure this one would be on it. It's jam-packed with practical, put-to-workable information o I DID NOT READ THIS VERSION OF THIS BOOK - I chose the wrong one for my "currently reading" list and cannot find a way to get rid of it. That said, here's the review of the version I DID read: Back in the Dark Ages when I conducted employee development seminars on variety of topics, I made it a point to provide participants with a take-home list of resources - mostly books. If I made such a list today, for sure this one would be on it. It's jam-packed with practical, put-to-workable information on what it really takes to land a spot at the top of the corporate leaderboard. Subtitled "The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders," the book is based on extensive research that was featured in a 2017 issue of Harvard Business Review. But not to worry; it's far from a lofty dissertation that only a Ph.D. can understand. The authors lay out, using real-life examples, four key "CEO genome" behaviors they've found to be present in all successful CEOs and provide in-depth but simply stated steps for putting the behaviors to work in real life (yours). The book begins by poo-pooing conventional wisdom; it's not necessary, for instance, to be an Ivy League grad or an egomaniac. And surprise (at least to me, who grew up with the notion that if I worked hard I'd get noticed and get ahead), work ethic plays no role in the likelihood of becoming a CEO. Still another? Future CEOs typically have held from eight to 11 positions in four to six companies. So much for the late 1950s CW that job-hopping is a sure-fire career ender (if I recall correctly, anything less than five years at one place was a no-no). Interspersed throughout are nuggets I found especially noteworthy, such as that it's better to make a decision that's potentially bad than to make no decision at all. Or this one, which struck a chord with me, no doubt in light of the current political climate: "When you are a leader, most things that go wrong are not directly your fault - but they are always your responsibility." Chapters end with "key takeaways," and at the finish line are a ton of endnotes, arranged by chapter for easy reference. Here's my own takeaway: If you've got your eye on becoming a CEO of any size company - or just want to emulate the behaviors of those who have been there, done that - this book is a must. Many thanks to the publisher (via NetGalley) for the opportunity to read an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alexander Rivas

    I read this book because it was one of the two books chosen for "The Next Big Idea" book club. This book gave me a new view of what a CEO looks like instead of what is usually portrayed on mass media. Most of the book is about four behaviors CEO's have with tons of case studies supporting those behaviors. Anyone needing a more clear and real-world view of what a CEO looks like, this is the book to read. I read this book because it was one of the two books chosen for "The Next Big Idea" book club. This book gave me a new view of what a CEO looks like instead of what is usually portrayed on mass media. Most of the book is about four behaviors CEO's have with tons of case studies supporting those behaviors. Anyone needing a more clear and real-world view of what a CEO looks like, this is the book to read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Monnie

    Back in the Dark Ages when I conducted employee development seminars on variety of topics, I made it a point to provide participants with a take-home list of resources - mostly books. If I made such a list today, for sure this one would be on it. It's jam-packed with practical, put-to-workable information on what it really takes to land a spot at the top of the corporate leaderboard. Subtitled "The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders," the book is based on extensiv Back in the Dark Ages when I conducted employee development seminars on variety of topics, I made it a point to provide participants with a take-home list of resources - mostly books. If I made such a list today, for sure this one would be on it. It's jam-packed with practical, put-to-workable information on what it really takes to land a spot at the top of the corporate leaderboard. Subtitled "The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders," the book is based on extensive research that was featured in a 2017 issue of Harvard Business Review. But not to worry; it's far from a lofty dissertation that only a Ph.D. can understand. The authors lay out, using real-life examples, four key "CEO genome" behaviors they've found to be present in all successful CEOs and provide in-depth but simply stated steps for putting the behaviors to work in real life (yours). The book begins by poo-pooing conventional wisdom; it's not necessary, for instance, to be an Ivy League grad or an egomaniac. And surprise (at least to me, who grew up with the notion that if I worked hard I'd get noticed and get ahead), work ethic plays no role in the likelihood of becoming a CEO. Still another? Future CEOs typically have held from eight to 11 positions in four to six companies. So much for the late 1950s CW that job-hopping is a sure-fire career ender (if I recall correctly, anything less than five years at one place was a no-no). Interspersed throughout are nuggets I found especially noteworthy, such as that it's better to make a decision that's potentially bad than to make no decision at all. Or this one, which struck a chord with me, no doubt in light of the current political climate: "When you are a leader, most things that go wrong are not directly your fault - but they are always your responsibility." Chapters end with "key takeaways," and at the finish line are a ton of endnotes, arranged by chapter for easy reference. Here's my own takeaway: If you've got your eye on becoming a CEO of any size company - or just want to emulate the behaviors of those who have been there, done that - this book is a must. Many thanks to the publisher (via NetGalley) for the opportunity to read an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Cyndi Elliott

    The CEO Next Door was one I thought I’d struggle with but as one of my #leaderbox titles I had to commit to it. Once I got past the title and the first 50 pages I found a wealth of information from understanding what it takes to be a successful leader to identifying the keys to acing high profile interviews and efficient networking. This is a book for anyone who aspires to climb to the next wrung of their career even if you don’t intend on being CEO.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Shubhi Saxena

    Loved this book even though I am just 2 years into my career. Extremely data-driven and with spot-on real life examples. Although some parts might be irrelevant for people in early stage of their careers, this book still has a lot of insight to offer on what skills to develop, what kind of roles to take up and what mistakes to avoid as you progress in your career.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Omkar

    This book provides many crucial guidelines and rare insights into the overpacked life of countless CEO's. A must-read for anybody who wants to lead someday, no matter in which phase of life you currently are. This book provides many crucial guidelines and rare insights into the overpacked life of countless CEO's. A must-read for anybody who wants to lead someday, no matter in which phase of life you currently are.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra

    If you want to be a leader in a business you should probably read this. Planning resources, growth suggestions, pitfall admonishment, hard numbers to back it all up.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Maria BF

    While I didn’t love this book, I didn’t hate it either. There was some solid advice/info sprinkled throughout, but I found quite a bit of it to be basic-level knowledge (e.g. be yourself in an interview). I was hoping for something insightful and finally came across it near the end of the book during the section on managing your board of directors. The rest of it was a bit tough to get through merely because the stories/examples tended to drag out beyond the point they were trying to make. Piece While I didn’t love this book, I didn’t hate it either. There was some solid advice/info sprinkled throughout, but I found quite a bit of it to be basic-level knowledge (e.g. be yourself in an interview). I was hoping for something insightful and finally came across it near the end of the book during the section on managing your board of directors. The rest of it was a bit tough to get through merely because the stories/examples tended to drag out beyond the point they were trying to make. Pieces of the writing felt like “fluff.” However, I really can’t complain. The solid advice/info portions made it good enough to spend the time reading this book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Maciej Nowicki

    The CEO Next Door is based on over 10 years of research into 18,000 professional reports of pre-selected candidates, high-level jobs mostly in billion-dollar companies. The book focuses on CEOs with research separating candidates who turned out to be good leaders as CEOs and those who turned out to be outstanding performers. It does bring to every reader the secrets of the most successful people in business to help you learn from the best so that you can tailor your approach to individual situat The CEO Next Door is based on over 10 years of research into 18,000 professional reports of pre-selected candidates, high-level jobs mostly in billion-dollar companies. The book focuses on CEOs with research separating candidates who turned out to be good leaders as CEOs and those who turned out to be outstanding performers. It does bring to every reader the secrets of the most successful people in business to help you learn from the best so that you can tailor your approach to individual situations no matter how you define it. Naturally, we absorb from observing and imitating those around us, those who have mastered the skills we desire. We look at people who have made it and try to figure out and replicate the secrets of their success. Nevertheless, we see, on the surface, just a fraction of the full picture of each professional journey. They are so unique that it’s hard to know what can be generalised and what’s unique to that individual. On the other hand, it might be just pure luck. So what are the repeatable lessons from the most successful people that we can learn from? There are things that, while not easy, can be flexed and built over time. And, as the book underlines, there are 4 qualities that are crucial in order to become an outstanding leader and a CEO. The first is decisiveness – moving with speed and conviction. The next one is reliable delivery, so putting things in place, being trustworthy and of performing consistently well. Adaptability, which means being future-oriented and proactively adapting your company to needs that are fluctuating in the market. The last one is engaging...(if you like to read my full review please visit my blog https://leadersarereaders.blog/the-ce...)

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kimball

    This was a decent book. Here are my notes: A candidate with a strong accent is 12 times less likely to be hired as a CEO. Under pressure you don't rise to the occasion, you sink to the level of your training. CEOs fail to teach accountability because they aren't accountable to their employees. CEOs should marry corporate and date the field. The thing that separates good Navy SEAL officers and great Navy SEAL officers are the great ones demonstrate humility. Great CEOs are ones that navigate the unknow This was a decent book. Here are my notes: A candidate with a strong accent is 12 times less likely to be hired as a CEO. Under pressure you don't rise to the occasion, you sink to the level of your training. CEOs fail to teach accountability because they aren't accountable to their employees. CEOs should marry corporate and date the field. The thing that separates good Navy SEAL officers and great Navy SEAL officers are the great ones demonstrate humility. Great CEOs are ones that navigate the unknown. They are comfortable with being uncomfortable. Some companies fail, as a result of failing to let go of what made them successful in the past. It's harder for companies today to last long. Companies used to last 65 years on average now it's only 23 years. How you handle blow-ups is critical to your success in any leadership role. If you're not comfortable rocking the boat you're probably not on the road to becoming a CEO. In America we use three times as many words on average just to convey a point One factor that will increase your chances of success of getting hired is reliability they need to see that you are reliable. It gives decision-makers a sense of safety that you will deliver. Feeling safe is more likely to bet on you. You get fired on results and hired upon perception 90% of CEO leadership is behavioral modification. Time to go be a CEO!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mark Hanson

    For those pursuing administration as a profession, there would be some good general lessons about approaching that field. While it is fairly narrowly tailored to that audience, most leaders would probably find some benefit from the material.

  13. 5 out of 5

    La Donna

    An interesting dissection of leaders, pitfalls, and game changers.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    A helpful read, whether you plan to make it to the top spot or not - provides quite a few suggestions about managing your career and what separates those who are successful from those who aren't. A helpful read, whether you plan to make it to the top spot or not - provides quite a few suggestions about managing your career and what separates those who are successful from those who aren't.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Archit

    A must-read - this book is unlike the mainstream anecdotal leadership books out there. 4 Stars for the overall content and 1 additional star for the fact that every claim made in the book has been statistically derived from ghSMART’s database of 17,000 CEOs and C-suite executive assessments, 13,000 hours of interviews and two decades advising CEOs and executive boards. GhSMART is the authors' leadership advisory firm, which grooms budding CEOs. Key takeaways: 1. Authors have developed the concept A must-read - this book is unlike the mainstream anecdotal leadership books out there. 4 Stars for the overall content and 1 additional star for the fact that every claim made in the book has been statistically derived from ghSMART’s database of 17,000 CEOs and C-suite executive assessments, 13,000 hours of interviews and two decades advising CEOs and executive boards. GhSMART is the authors' leadership advisory firm, which grooms budding CEOs. Key takeaways: 1. Authors have developed the concept of "CEO Genome" i.e. they have defined 4 qualities of high-performing CEOs: a. Decisiveness b. Reliability c. Adaptability d. Engaging with stakeholders 2. CEO Genome #1 - Decisiveness 3 lessons on decisiveness: A. Lesson 1 – make decisions faster • Make the complex simple (use mental models) • Give a voice, not a vote (involve people in decision-making) • Align aspirational v/s transactional goals, if there is misalignment, it will create problems (aspirational – when company is successful, what will others say. Inspirational – underlying goal in a specific situation) B. Lesson 2 – make fewer decisions C. Lesson 3 – get better after each decision • Perspective-getting (empathy). One standout point is stronger CEO candidates OFFERED mentorship rather than receiving them • Engage for impact: o Communicate – Rule of 7 – any message has to be repeated 7 times before an organization has any hope of hearing, use various media – memo, video, blog etc. o Break fown the sound barrier o Marry the corporate, date the field – get out of your office, visit the site • Test your ability of “engage for impact” 1. Do your teams feel that your organization has too many priorities? 2. Do people leave performance review meetings you conduct with them unable to clearly articulate their strengths, gaps, and what’s expected of them? 3. Do you move slowly to determine how to handle a loyal team member who is unlikely to fit with the company’s future? 4. Is the word nice in the top three adjectives used to describe you? 5. When considering a decision, is your first thought about how it will impact relationships? 6. Do those around you (your team, your boss) say you avoid or minimize conflict? • Reliability o People who are organized, disciplined i.e. have high conscientiousness have higher probability of getting management roles o High Reliability Organizations (HRO) – eg. airlines o Use a “shared language” – for instance Pfiezer had used “Own it”. To test if people are aware, ask 50 people about the shared term, if they are aware, this means that its well-known o Reliability tool – scorecard – should contain mission/ vision, top 5 priorities. Example is given of Advanced Infusion Solutions o Assess your reliability 1. How consistent was I this week in my interactions with customers, colleagues, senior management, and 2. the people who work for me? 3. When am I thrown off my game? Is it situation specific? How do I manage those situations? 4. Does everyone on my team understand what is expected of them? Do they own their results? Do they 5. embrace responsibility and hold themselves accountable? 6. What are my boss/colleagues/clients trying to do? And how can I help them get there? 7. What expectations do my stakeholders have of me that aren’t being openly discussed? 8. What am I expected to deliver? Have I written it down? Have I shared it with my boss, peers, and team? 9. How often was I on time for meetings in the last week? • Adaptability – o Jim Smith, CEO of Thomson Reuters (world’s largest financial news provider) started as a journalist o Actively seek out novelty – build new habits, skills, experience o Step into new, unfamiliar roles to broaden experience/ develop leadership skills o Example – Intel shut down memory chip business & pioneered microprocessors o Build network outside your company and field o Do “pre-mortem” o Beware of cognitive overload • Career Catapult – Career trajectory is a function of: Getting results in the right roles AND getting noticed for those results • 3 stages of CEO’s path o Stage 1 (0 – 8 years) – go broad i.e. become the ultimate generalist o Stage 2 (9-16 years) – Go Deep – general management roles o Stage 3 (17 – 24 years) – go high – while many CEOs will remain effective functional leaders, middle managers or even P/L operators, future CEOs will differentiate themselves as enterprise leaders • Types of Career Catapults o #1 – the big leap – thrive in a new, uncertain environment; navigate a complex terrain. Roughly 50% of the leaps took place within the first 8 years of career. This results in deepened appreciation of the broader set of functions that one will need to manage o DIY Big leaps –  Seek out cross-functional projects  Get involved in M&A transactions  Volunteer to lead or participate in business initiative  Ask how you could best contribute to the business.  • Ask your boss for additional responsibilities, especially those that will add to your skill set.  Proactively look for and solve problems before you are asked.  Make a habit of saying yes to greater opportunity, even if you don’t feel ready.  Seek out relationships that are broader or more senior in your customer organizations than what is customary for someone at your level.  Look at your personal life as a way to practice big leaps and build new skills: Take on civic leadership roles, from city government to the school board; volunteer in a leadership role or even form a new nonprofit; look for public speaking opportunities if that’s a big development area for you. o #2 – the big mess – underperforming business unit, recalled product, take the job no one wants o #3 – go small to go big – go small means either work in a small company or start “small” – build processes from scratch. Vyomesh Joshi – CEO – 3D Systems (3D printing) • Career blowups – curse or crucible? Guideposts o Having different kind of blow ups are ok o How you handle the blow up > blow ups o How to catapult without crash-landing  Align supporters  Align senior management  Ensure you have resources – budget, talent  Stay connected o Stand out – how to become known –  pick your boss – don’t make them feel attacked, don’t leave them upstaged  mirror your boss’ language, goals o build your tribe (sponsor) – share aspiration with sponsor, ask for advice on topics relevant to her, make easy-to-fulfil requests • Build a bonfire – rapport with boss’ boss • Ask for what you want. Note – pre-requisite is that you must have “EARNED THE RIGHT TO ASK” by delivering a strong performance. If you are unsure of what you want, still ask • Your tone should be that of aspiration, not desperation • Rock the boat – productive conflict • Look & speak the part (author talks about Lynda Spillane – public speaking coach) • You get fires on results but hired on perception • Interviews o Foreign accent – CEOs with foreign accents are LESS LIKELY to be hired o Pretentious language is a put-off o Management platitudes are a turn-off o We v/s I • How to be effective o Meaningful numbers – quantifiable results, comparable data o Bonafide, vivid stories • Talking points : o Industry experience – been there, done that o Being a general, not a foot soldier o Business acumen • 4 archetypes o Sky’s the limit (elon musk) o Lean, mean operational machine (focus on efficiency) o ER surgeons (turnaround expert) o Safe pair of hands (reliable) • Threats (encountered upon getting the role) o #1 – ghoul in the supply closet – gap between board’s expectation v/s business reality – bring such problems to the Board’s attention within 6 months. Else, it will become your problem o #2 – entering warp speed o #3 – amplification & permanent spotlight – adapt your leadership style, fine-tune your body language, your smallest moves will create ripple effects, every gesture is profound, your words are no longer musings, casual thoughts, banter. They are declarations with the power to shape the future • Lever 1 - culture shaping – o How consistently you articulate & model the behaviors you seek o Where you put your time and attention o Whom you hire, fire and promote • Lever 2 – financial strategy – capital allocation decision, investing capital, cash conversion cycle, projected capex • Lever 3 – corporate diplomacy • 1 of the main CEO Failures – broken board relations – failure to manage the Board • Hence, develop a relation with Board. Pose questions to the directors o What excites you about being on the board o How did you get connected here o Where have you focused your time and efforts in the past

  16. 4 out of 5

    Anoop Dixith

    This book is densely packed with tons of C-suite level stories, happenings at the very top, as well as guidelines and tips for aspiring and current CEOs. Best thing about all of these? Certainly the fact that it's data-driven. The authors, Kim Powell and Elena L. Botelho are consultants at ghSmart, a consultancy firm that primarily advises on leadership strategy, offering support across a broad range of solutions, particularly regarding CEO succession. Apparently, ghSmart had a meaty collection This book is densely packed with tons of C-suite level stories, happenings at the very top, as well as guidelines and tips for aspiring and current CEOs. Best thing about all of these? Certainly the fact that it's data-driven. The authors, Kim Powell and Elena L. Botelho are consultants at ghSmart, a consultancy firm that primarily advises on leadership strategy, offering support across a broad range of solutions, particularly regarding CEO succession. Apparently, ghSmart had a meaty collection of data about CEO behavior, qualities, their successes and failures from their vast experience of vetting CEOs for many years. ghSmart CEO Geoff Smart (that was smart of him to name the firm so) handed over this data to Dr.Jim Goodnight on a clear day and asked for the best data-driven analytics on this dataset. Jim is the founder of the business analytics company SaS, so he is in fact quite well qualified to do this analysis. The result was extended under a project called The CEO Genome project and also written as this book. In fact, after reading the book, I thought The CEO Genome might have been a better title for it. On some pages, because of everything mentioned above, the book comes across as a promotional piece!  Coming to the content of the book itself, it's just brilliant. Years of experience as advisors to top CEOs of many Fortune 500 companies has been distilled into a section-wise organized book that is both a compelling read and a conducive guide. I got to learn about the lives of many CEOs who are not typically our usual suspects, but nevertheless have insanely engaging career paths. The stories of Don Slager of Republic Services, of the Joffrey Ballet group and its CEO Ashley, of Neil Fiske, Bill Amelio of Lenovo and CHC helicopters, Jim Donald of Extended America fame, Scot Clawson, Davis Siegel, Maty Berner of Reader's Digest, Eva Moskovitz of the legendary Success Academy Charter Schools etc were positively motivating. My favorite one of the lot is the story of Thomson Reuters CEO Jim Smith, who rose from being a journalist to be at the helm of his company. His unusual rise to the top is a testimony to the axiom that there's no strict formula for getting the top job. Some stories like Greyhound CEO's spike idea of  "no light no people, so no bus" , Intel CEO Andy Grove's "Lets stop doing memory chips and start making microprocessors" were beyond wow!  Apart from that, the book is also heavy on analyzing the qualities of top CEOs, then trying to infer those that win and those that affect negatively, and finally attempting to manage both of them for maximizing the benefit for the company. Some of the results have been counter-intuitive while many are plain obvious. For example, between Fast action vs Decisive action, fast action wins, meaning the CEOs that act "faster" (even with incomplete information) perform better. While "Reliability" is the most sought-after quality in a CEO from her company's board, introvert CEOs are not rarity AND their performance is typically not sub-par in comparison to their extroverted, outgoing, networking-friendly counterparts.  Overall, I think this is a must-read for all current and aspiring CEOs who like to understand what it takes to get to the top job, what to expect when you're getting there, and what to look forward to for retaining the throne and performing consistently well once you get there!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Chandler Lyles

    This book read more like a collection of blog posts than an actually well crafted business book. The listicles in every chapter were helpful at first and became draining toward the end. Three stars because the information contained in the book is very valuable. For me, I would’ve like the storytelling to be a little stronger and for there to have been some tools or systems or resources peppered throughout to make implementation easier.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Anna

    A rare leadership book that's not full of platitudes and packed with good advice and interesting examples from the author's work with CEOs. Probably more useful to those more advanced in their career, but even as a young professional I enjoyed it a lot. A rare leadership book that's not full of platitudes and packed with good advice and interesting examples from the author's work with CEOs. Probably more useful to those more advanced in their career, but even as a young professional I enjoyed it a lot.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Bryce B

    This is a book that I marked up, tabbed the pages, and plan to revisit often. I like leadership books, but ones that are quantitatively based have a elevated level of validity. If you’re looking for a road map to becoming a business executive, this is it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Prasanna

    Please read this book or miss it on your own peril. An amazing book filled with insights and action items to work on your way to leadership. This book will be of immense help to someone in early 30's as they start their mid-management career and it will give them an insight peek into the CEO journey and what's expected. The four behaviours and the list of things to do and avoid or explained with real life incidents. The beauty was in the way the authors have described these incidents and visualise Please read this book or miss it on your own peril. An amazing book filled with insights and action items to work on your way to leadership. This book will be of immense help to someone in early 30's as they start their mid-management career and it will give them an insight peek into the CEO journey and what's expected. The four behaviours and the list of things to do and avoid or explained with real life incidents. The beauty was in the way the authors have described these incidents and visualise it. Salute to the authors for doing this master piece!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa Princessa

    I read this book thanks to Blinkist. It is packed with good advice, but written in the most boring & confusing way. I had to re-read multiple passages twice to get to the core idea, which was annoying. The key message in these blinks: CEOs aren’t superhuman. In fact, they’re just regular people who’ve developed certain skills that allow them to climb ranks in the workplace. Being decisive, consistent, committed and reliable are all fundamental traits of a CEO. Having a well-planned system in place I read this book thanks to Blinkist. It is packed with good advice, but written in the most boring & confusing way. I had to re-read multiple passages twice to get to the core idea, which was annoying. The key message in these blinks: CEOs aren’t superhuman. In fact, they’re just regular people who’ve developed certain skills that allow them to climb ranks in the workplace. Being decisive, consistent, committed and reliable are all fundamental traits of a CEO. Having a well-planned system in place is also important, as is understanding stakeholders and being able to adapt to the future. Actionable advice: Use an authoritative voice Next time you’re in a meeting or an interview, use simple language, be clear and don’t rush when you speak. Remember to pause for dramatic effect when you want a message to really sink in. These speech patterns will project your authority and help ensure that your listeners will really hear you. Suggested further reading: The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle Daniel Coyle’s The Culture Code (2018) digs into the findings of psychologists, organizational behavior theorists and his own firsthand knowledge of the contemporary business world to provide answers. What makes a group tick? Why do some teams outperform other seemingly evenly matched competitors? As well-researched as it is practical, this study of group dynamics is packed full of illuminating ideas and considered, hands-on advice about getting the best performance out of groups.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Hite

    The CEO Next Door is an excellent and informative manual for new CEO's and those looking to one day break into the C-suite. Elena Botelho and Kim Powell have taken statistics from 17000 interviews of leaders, directors and CEOs and complied the strongest traits for successful CEOs to adapt. They provide detailed examples from current and former CEOs. The second part of the book focuses on how to build a career and skills to one day fill the CEO position. Again there is a long list of detailed at The CEO Next Door is an excellent and informative manual for new CEO's and those looking to one day break into the C-suite. Elena Botelho and Kim Powell have taken statistics from 17000 interviews of leaders, directors and CEOs and complied the strongest traits for successful CEOs to adapt. They provide detailed examples from current and former CEOs. The second part of the book focuses on how to build a career and skills to one day fill the CEO position. Again there is a long list of detailed attributes for success coupled with examples of real life successes and failures. The third portion of the book covers what to do when becoming a new CEO, how to garner favor with the board, employees and investors. This is a great business book and reference aide to building a successful career at the top.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Morton

    Great review of career trajectories to the top of both fortune 500 and other companies. The authors present a diverse set of individuals, companies, and approaches to climbing, sustaining, and thriving in executive positions. I mostly enjoyed the approach taken to write this book for individuals mid-career, or in middle management, who are starting to consider where they want to go in the future. Not everyone can, should, or wants to make it to the top of an organization. This analysis was highly Great review of career trajectories to the top of both fortune 500 and other companies. The authors present a diverse set of individuals, companies, and approaches to climbing, sustaining, and thriving in executive positions. I mostly enjoyed the approach taken to write this book for individuals mid-career, or in middle management, who are starting to consider where they want to go in the future. Not everyone can, should, or wants to make it to the top of an organization. This analysis was highly valuable for me, and had me reflect on my wishes, and also project that analysis into others in my organization and those I am in contact with. I'd recommend this book for anyone considering rising through the corporate ladder, starting their own company, or who want more influence in their organization (even if they don't want to rise through the ranks).

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kenny

    No matter in what stages of your career, this book is relevant. For entry level junior, you can sharpen your potential by 4 "must-have" skills. It helps you to advance in career, not just in stagnant middle manager level. For CEO's, this is a good book too, to keep sustaining your hard work in comprehensive aspect. I can say, this book suits everyone from every background. I love this kind of book: bring the readers to be advance and broader by not forgetting the reality. As you read the book, El No matter in what stages of your career, this book is relevant. For entry level junior, you can sharpen your potential by 4 "must-have" skills. It helps you to advance in career, not just in stagnant middle manager level. For CEO's, this is a good book too, to keep sustaining your hard work in comprehensive aspect. I can say, this book suits everyone from every background. I love this kind of book: bring the readers to be advance and broader by not forgetting the reality. As you read the book, Elena presents you research-based data by ghSMART in every chapter of the book. So, this is not just "how to be CEO" book. Rather, Elena lay facts by her observation and show us the good way. Love it 100%, very useful and essential.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Matt Cannon

    This was a good book showing that some of the everyday people that you wouldn’t maybe expect can actually make some of the best CEO’s. This book is heavily rooted in data in that they’ve reviewed in-depth questionnaires, interviewed company stakeholders, CEO’s themselves and surveys on the effectiveness of the leaders. The book acts as a framework for anyone interested in understanding the process that CEO’s go through, decisions they have to make and the qualities that are present in those that This was a good book showing that some of the everyday people that you wouldn’t maybe expect can actually make some of the best CEO’s. This book is heavily rooted in data in that they’ve reviewed in-depth questionnaires, interviewed company stakeholders, CEO’s themselves and surveys on the effectiveness of the leaders. The book acts as a framework for anyone interested in understanding the process that CEO’s go through, decisions they have to make and the qualities that are present in those that excel as well as those who don’t do good in that type of role. This was an interesting book if you’re interested in self-development and business.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Wally Bock

    The CEO Next Door: The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders by Elena L. Botelho, Kim R. Powell, and Tahl Raz shares solid experience and research-based advice about how to do a better job in a leadership position, how to climb to a senior position, and what to do and how to avoid common pitfalls when you become a CEO. It’s worth reading despite a title that overpromises and some language that is simply silly. See my full review at http://www.threestarleadership.com/ The CEO Next Door: The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders by Elena L. Botelho, Kim R. Powell, and Tahl Raz shares solid experience and research-based advice about how to do a better job in a leadership position, how to climb to a senior position, and what to do and how to avoid common pitfalls when you become a CEO. It’s worth reading despite a title that overpromises and some language that is simply silly. See my full review at http://www.threestarleadership.com/ev...

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lawrence Chen

    I just love things based upon stat and knowledge. I got this book before it ever published, (March 7th, 2018, one day before the publishing in Amazon bookstore) I heard a short introduction of this book at [email protected](Leadership Category) . Though, they still talk about big-sense, but at least these big-sense were based upon stat, they are thoughtful ideas instead of speculations. Risk-Taking, quick decision making and collective horizon form a basic guidline of Leaders.

  28. 4 out of 5

    William Anderson

    While having a slow start and delivering little value for the first quarter of the book, momentum thereafter builds rapidly with powerful anecdotes, consolidated takeaways and empowering advice. While geared towards current CEOs this book is perhaps even more valuable in the hands of middle managers with high aspirations. It can help guide them towards the CEO role at a point where veering vs pivots is still effective in their careers and lives.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Moon Talukdar

    This book is for every professional who wants or not to become a ceo, but to simply advance in your career and to learn some great leadership qualities. Examples of some exceptional CEO’s who’s situations were pretty much similar to us today but no easy. Many of us just look at our reasons not to get the taste of success, be it lack of a degree from reputed schools or family legacy or our own background, but these all doesn’t count if you have a zeal to lead

  30. 4 out of 5

    Alvin Soh

    Succinct book that every aspiring CEO should read Clear, succinct, practical, and well-backed by research. Well organized that after reading, it is easy to remember. Highly recommended for every aspiring CEO!

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