Are European CEOs Future-ready?

  • Today's global business landscape is marked by intricate technological and societal challenges, intensified by geopolitical shifts and economic disparities. The expectations for CEOs have undoubtedly evolved, now requiring a form of adaptive leadership capable of steering through unprecedented disruptions, managing vast organizational and environmental complexities, and navigating an unstable geopolitical landscape. Added to these challenges is the urgent need to build inclusive, purpose-driven organizations that resonate with an increasingly demanding and discerning workforce. In light of these transformative changes, a pressing question looms large for corporate boards and stakeholders alike: Are European CEOs adequately equipped and prepared for the future? To address this, we carried out extensive empirical research on the 600 largest publicly listed corporations in Europe across 14 countries. We examined the life histories and career paths of approximately 1,350 CEOs. Our aim is to offer a comprehensive assessment of CEO profiles, highlighting strengths and potential challenges in the face of specific strategic imperatives. Our overarching findings underscore a duality; while there has been commendable progress in certain areas, distinct gaps remain in others, and these disparities further vary across European markets.

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Author:Serden Özcan, Ayse Karaevli
Subtitle (English):A Status Report on Europe's 600 Largest Corporations
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2023/09/18
Publishing Institution:WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management
Release Date:2023/09/19
Tag:CEO profiles; Corporate boards; Disruptive trends; European CEOs
Institutes:WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management
Licence (German):Creative Commons - CC BY - Namensnennung 4.0 International