Knowledge Archive

McKinsey, October 1, 2011, Brad Brown, Michael Chui, James Manyika
Radical customization, constant experimentation, and novel business models will be new hallmarks of competition as companies capture and analyze huge volumes of data. Here’s what you should know.
The top marketing executive at a sizable US retailer recently found herself perplexed by the sales reports she was getting. A major competitor was steadily gaining market share across a range of profitable segments. Despite a counterpunch that combined online promotions with merchandizing improvements, her company kept losing ground. When the executive convened a group of senior leaders to... Read more »
McKinsey, September 1, 2011, Robert S. Kaplan
As executives become more senior, they are less likely to receive constructive performance and strategic feedback. They can get it by calling on their junior colleagues.
The problem Subordinates don’t want to offend the boss. Therefore, as you become more senior in an organization, you tend to get less feedback. Over time, you risk growing confused about your development needs and becoming isolated from criticism. Why it matters Your junior colleagues represent an untapped source of feedback that can help you materially improve your performance... Read more »
McKinsey, July 1, 2011, McKinsey Global Survey
Corporate directors know which issues they should focus on to be more effective. But they say they have not raised their game since 2008 and must strengthen their capabilities to do so.
Corporate boards are under pressure to take more responsibility for developing strategyand overseeing business risk after the financial crisis exposed many cases of inadequate governance. Yet, according to the latest McKinsey Quarterly survey on governance. corporate directors report that their boards have not increased the time spent on company strategysince our previous survey, conducted in... Read more »
McKinsey, June 1, 2011, Simon C. Y. Wong
Many boards have improved their structures and processes. But to become truly effective stewards of their companies, they must also instill the right mind-set and boardroom dynamics.
Why is it that despite all the corporate-governance reforms undertaken over the past two decades, many boards failed the test of the financial crisis so badly? In North America and Europe, for example, boards of financial institutions that failed to check management’s aggressive forays into US subprime mortgages saw their firms decimated during the 2008–09 economic meltdown. Indeed, the European... Read more »
McKinsey, February 11, 2011, Michiel Kruyt, Judy Malan, Rachel Tuffield
When a top team fails to function, it can paralyze a whole company. Here’s what CEOs need to watch out for.
Few teams function as well as they could. But the stakes get higher with senior-executive teams: dysfunctional ones can slow down, derail, or even paralyze a whole company. In our work with top teams at more than 100 leading multinational companies,* including surveys with 600 senior executives at 30 of them, we’ve identified three crucial priorities for constructing and managing effective top... Read more »


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