A lacking or wrong strategy is the main reason for the failure of top managers. 40% of interviewed managers from Germany, Austria and Switzerland came to this conclusion in a study by Odgers Berndtson (www.odgersberndtson.com). Further factors of failure are deficits in the leadership and development of employees (35.1%) and in the judgement and the ability to make decisions (32.9%).
In sum, this research study speaks a very clear language. Strategic leadership competences, which encompass apart from the strategy definition also the discernment and decision as well as the strategic leadership, are seen as essential qualities for top executives, but also as their main stumbling blocks.
These insights should trigger considerations in multiple directions. Organizational and personal development approaches need to undergo a fundamental revision, but also the strategic planning processes and tools. Last but not least, one should deal with the question of how to motivate executives at the upper end of the ladder to reflect and further develop their strategic leadership capabilities and consequent performance results.