We invite you to learn about some of the real work we’ve done with select clients.

Leadership Development

Setting up a first-time CEO for success in a leading investment firm

Our approach for accelerating executive performance is informed by our work with over 18,000 executives over 20 years, and our CEO Genome® Project – the largest study on the behavioral patterns that drive results for aspiring and incumbent CEOs. Clients tell us that these insights offer pattern recognition and confidence when navigating high stakes decisions on the key levers—Priorities, Who, internal and external Relationships—that impact business results.

Situation & challenge
  • Our client was one of the world’s largest investment management firms
  • After the long-term, successful tenure of the past CEO, the incoming CEO sought to accelerate growth by
    • Scaling and adapting his own leadership style
    • Strengthening composition and effectiveness of the top team
    • Setting a new pace for the company
  • The new CEO was in search of an objective advisor to push his thinking, provide candid feedback, and help him avoid predictable mistakes of first-time CEOs
  • ghSMART engaged with the new CEO even before the formal transition
Scope of work
  • ghSMART co-created a CEO Scorecard with the Board and key stakeholders
  • Then we implemented a 360-degree SmartFeedback® process for the CEO and tailored the leadership acceleration plan accordingly
  • Based on this, we cascaded the CEO’s agenda into Scorecards for his direct reports, conducted 360-degree feedbacks, and created development plans for the team
  • We guided fact-based decisions on the executive team composition, and facilitated new team norms on decision making, transparency, debate, and candor
  • We established a Board engagement strategy and helped develop communications to the employee base
Impact and results
  • After year one, the CEO has rolled out and is executing on a 5-prong strategy
  • We continue quarterly “pulse checks;” a final 360-degree feedback and PWR Score® show strong progress against the Scorecard
  • The Board considers him “the CEO we need for the next chapter”
  • The leadership team noted, “tangible and positive changes to how his direct reports function as a team”
  • Employee engagement scores reflect increased optimism
  • The CEO personally found a real partner in his ghSMART advisor and notes “[the] challenges, structure, and sounding board environment have been invaluable to me”
Related links
"No investment is more important than building our teams, and ghSMART helps us do it right."
Ken Griffin
CEO Citadel LLC
"I have worked with ghSMART for over 10 years while I was Chairman and CEO of AMETEK Inc. Our biggest challenge was in sourcing and developing leadership, while growing at a very rapid rate. ghSMART was instrumental in their assessments of potential candidates to facilitate the selection and subsequent onboarding of top tier individuals for high level positions. The ghSMART methodology is superb."
Frank Hermance
Chairman Emeritus at Ametek
"When FORTUNE broke off from Time Inc., we needed to build a high functioning team, much of it from scratch. ghSMART made it possible for us to do that. In an economy where talent is the most important resource, ghSMART understands that resource, and how to get the maximum from it, better than anyone else I know."
Alan Murray
CEO at Fortune