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    Links to Leadership - September 2015

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    2015-04-11 - Links to Leadership, finalized - 392x101

    Links to Recent Articles On Executive Leadership For Builder Leaders & their Investors
    September 2015

    BSG Team Ventures is dedicated to thought leadership on topics of interest and relevance to executives who are building their companies, and the investors who invest in them. We call these executives Builder Leaders - and this is the talent in which we specialize on behalf of our clients.

    There is a tremendous amount of research being published on leadership, and our goal is to curate that material and share it within our community. For ease of browsing, we have provided a list of sources, and we have categorized the articles.

    Feel free to forward this to other leadership peers, executives in portfolio companies, or investors who may have interest in staying current on the latest thinking in these areas.

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    Curated Articles
    Syndicated Publications Business School Research Independent Publications
    • Forbes
    • Harvard Business Review
    • McKinsey Quarterly
    • Wall Street Journal
    • Washington Post
    • Dusseldorf Institute for Competition Economics
    • Harvard Business School
    • Stanford Graduate School of Business
    • University of Maryland Robert H. School Business School
    • Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania
    • Executive Grapevine
    • Hubspot
    • Science of People
    For CEOs For PE Investors For VC Investors

    6 Essential Social Media Lessons From Top Executives

    Do you know a company executive who lacks a social media presence? New research tells us that he or she may be in the minority. According to a number of reports, top corporate executives are more social than they’ve ever been: companies are more aware than ever of the importance social media can play in driving brand awareness. However, digital progress is occurring in leaps and bounds and many c-level executives can’t keep up due to their already crunched-for-time schedules and lack of know-how. Leading inbound marketing software provider Hubspot offers some worthwhile advice for executive leaders by dissecting the strategies of those who have mastered the art of the online presence. This article organizes their digital acumen into 6 helpful social media lessons.

    Read more »

    Pitfalls to Avoid When You Inherit a Team

    Inheriting a team is just like starting a new relationship, and the same rules apply: Communication is key, but so are balance, empathy, and patience. Harvard Business Review blogger and Vice President of Team Solutions at Knightbridge Human Capital Liane Davey provides clear directives for how to deal with common mistakes made by leaders taking over existing teams, and she recommends specific topics to address in order to build and bolster trust.

    Read more »

    Ascending to the C-suite

    A new ascendent to the C-suite is often expected to have new ideas, good answers, and a firm grasp on leadership. Key findings from a recent McKinsey Global Survey indicate that executives who made the most successful transitions say it was just as important to align their organizations as it was to align with their organization, and this article highlights important milestones for the C-suite challenge.

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    Private Equity Can Make Firms More Innovative

    The trouble with conventional wisdom is that it's overly general. For example, conventional wisdom states that private equity tends to gravitate towards low-risk, predictable, market-dominant firms that rank low in innovation. However, a recent working paper out of the Dusseldorf Institute for Competition Economics indicates that leveraged buyouts (LBOs) can lead to an increase in patents, especially highly cited patents. The full paper is linked below, as is the Harvard Business Review article, which highlights the specific LBOs and industries for which this trend exists, and suggests reasons as to why this is the case.

    Read more »

    Read the research paper »

    Risk and the Unmarried CEO

    Perhaps it is not a surprise to you that unmarried CEOs are more inclined to take risks than married CEOs; after all, unmarried CEOs tend to be younger and be in younger companies. In this interview, Wharton professor Nikolai Roussanov discusses the results of his paper, which investigates the magnitude of the differences between the investment strategies of unmarried and married CEOs, even after taking into account corporate environment and culture. He also examines strategies for incentivizing desired behavior based on marital status as a proxy indicator for inclination for risk.

    Read more »

    Read the research paper »

    The Venture Capital Club Gets Less Exclusive

    Crowdfunding as a concept is older than the internet, but the idea has acquired new life, thanks to the ease of communication in the digital age. The better known crowdfunding projects are independent ventures launched in Kickstarter or IndieGogo, but this Wall Street Journal article describes a new site called AngelList, which democratizes the investment process for new ventures.

    Read more »

    Form or substance: the role of business plans in venture capital decision making

    "A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers." So spake Plato in an age when philosophy was a science, and nearly two millennia hence, it would seem that this adage is as true as ever. In this paper by University of Maryland Robert H. School Business School professor David Kirsch, data about 718 funding requests from the turn of the century are analyzed in terms of content, form of submission, and ultimate funding status. It turns out not all information is created equally. Some are more equal than others.

    Read more »

    Read the research article »


    Executive Compensation On Leadership On Talent Acquisition and Interviewing

    Is Your CEO’s High Salary Scaring Away Customers?

    People tend to dramatically underestimate CEO-to-worker pay ratio, but until recently, it was unclear whether or not people would change their behavior if they had more accurate information. This Harvard Business Review article summarizes the results of a new working paper that attempts to gauge the effect of disclosure on customer behavior and suggests different aspects of branding that may win them over.

    Read more »

    Some Corporate Crises Require Big Executive Bonuses

    In a results-driven world, corporate executives often live and die by the sword. They earn huge bonuses when profits are climbing, and they can lose their jobs quickly if results turn sour. But when a company plunges into a true crisis, new research by the Stanford Graduate School of Business suggests that offering executives the right kind of bonuses, and even some forgiveness for bad results, can be the key to company survival. It sounds perverse, but as the old saying goes, you shouldn't change horses in midstream, sometimes even if the horse is what got you there.

    Read more »

    Read the research paper »


    Are women better leaders than men? Harvard Business Review piece gets whirlwind of response

    “Are women better leaders than men?” That’s the provocative question Joseph Folkman and Jack Zenger raised last month in a blog post on Harvard Business Review’s Web site, where they first published the results of their study based on the performance evaluations of more than 7,000 leaders. This Washington Post article gives the authors of the survey a chance to explore some of the nuances and ramification of their research.

    Read more »

    Decoding leadership: What really matters

    Telling CEOs these days that leadership drives performance is a bit like saying that oxygen is necessary to breathe. Over 90 percent of CEOs are already planning to increase investment in leadership development because they see it as the single most important human-capital issue their organizations face. New McKinsey research summarized in this article will help CEOs get the most bang for their buck by highlighting a small subset of leadership skills that closely correlate with leadership success, particularly among frontline leaders.

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    From Baseball to the Boardroom: How a Wise CEO Picks Talent

    Sometimes it helps to remember that, in the consideration of investing new talent, the most important reasons for onboarding are not what's on paper, but rather what's on the invisible spectrum -- things like cultural fit, business values, decision-making style, and motivation. In this Forbes article, Jamie McCourt (former CEO of the LA Dodgers; and investor in numerous startups, including Zipcar and Yo) relates personal anecdotes when her assessment of these attributes formed the primary motivation for her decisions to invest.

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    Toward a new HR philosophy

    Beyond handling of administrivia, the role of a company's human resources department is not always well defined, and a well-intentioned HR director may attempt to take on management, mediation, and nurturing of talent. McKinsey alumnus Peter Allen explains that this strategy may actually be counterproductive to the development of corporate cutlure and leadership; instead, he offers alternative responsibilities and goals that both serve the company and provide credit to HR's reputation as being the people department.

    Read more »

    For Entrepreneurs For Candidates Books

    William Barnett: When Being a Nonconformist Entrepreneur Pays Off

    When it comes to a startup’s success, timing is often everything. That’s why it is common for entrepreneurs — especially tech entrepreneurs — to rush to enter markets that are in the midst of a boom, usually presaged by a spectacular event such as a billion-dollar IPO. Entrepreneurs reasonably assume the risk of failure is lower when entering then, and that’s why high-profile successes can trigger an explosion of interest in a particular area. However, a new working paper from Stanford Graduate School of Business Professor William P. Barnett and University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Elizabeth G. Pontikes suggests that the nonconformist entrepreneur who enters the market at a low point and preemptively subjects himself to a high-stakes gauntlet has a much better chance of success than an entrepreneur that strikes while the iron is hot.

    Read more »

    Body Language Tips for Entrepreneurs

    A pop science truth is that communication is 60% body language and 40% verbal delivery. Combine that with the adage that you should fake it 'til you make it, and you should have an idea of what this article is about. A lot of it is common sense, but the value-add comes from the bite-sized, yet in-depth video segments with actionable bullet-points. Short enough to breakfast over, easy enough to start putting into practice as you go about your day.

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    Yes, Your Résumé Needs a Summary

    If you don't spend your days poring over resumes, it can be difficult to determine the most effective way to present your life story. (And let's face it, even if you do, it can still be hard to articulate what works and what doesn't.) Fortunately, this HBR article comes to the rescue with a succinct checklist and concrete examples that help you draft your resume the way you want a recruiter to read it.

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    How to Look Good in Skype Interviews: Tips & Training [4:13]

    We're not all of us celebrities with our own make-up and lighting people, so it's natural that a lot of Skype interviews happen in suboptimal settings -- but that doesn't have to be the case. With remote interviewing on the rise, giving yourself a professional bump can be as easy as mastering the tricks in this video.

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    Scaling Up Excellence: Getting to More Without Settling for Less

    In Scaling Up Excellence, bestselling author Robert Sutton and Stanford colleague Huggy Rao tackle a challenge that determines every organization’s success: scaling up farther, faster, and more effectively as a program or an organization creates a larger footprint. Drawn on inside accounts, case studies, and a wealth of academic research, this book stresses seven modes of cleaning up shop even during an expansion; as well as four warning signs exhibited by companies that doom any CEO, regardless of his efforts or intentions.

    Buy the book »

    Read the McKinsey review »

    Top CEOs reveal their favorite books

    Books about business, work, and management are recommended by the dozen -- but what do CEOs read in their spare time? This Executive Grapevine article -- and the infographic to which it refers -- highlights a curious mix of fiction, science, historical, and political, in addition to the usual business. What do you read in your spare time?

    Check out the books »

    Check out a handy infographic »

      Et Alia  

    Our gambling culture

    The craving for immediate gratification has spread well beyond Wall Street. We tend to speak of short-termism as though it’s a problem that only afflicts investors or corporate leaders, but that’s not the case. Short-term thinking pervades our most important institutions, from government to households. We’ve created a gambling culture in which we tune out everything except the most immediate outcomes. So what is the way out? This essay by Black Rock chairman and CEO Laurence Fink is a rallying cry for greater ambition, better education, more communication, and stronger leadership as correctives for a myopic culture.

    Read more »

    -by Clark Waterfall on Sep 3, 2015 10:52:52 AM


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