Is there such thing as a fast-track leadership program?
When we talk about leadership, we typically emphasize the “journey”. We highlight words like patience, experience, knowledge, trust, tenure, etc. Leadership is an earned role that comes through respect, and it takes time to earn respect.
However, there are headlines out there that will tell you to the contrary that there is a youth movement taking place amongst the Fortune 500 C-Suite executives. Just look at these young leaders:
- Mark Zuckerburg, CEO & Chairman of Facebook, 34 years old
- Keith Cozza, CEO & Director of Icahn Enterprises LP, 39 years old
- Larry Page, CEO & Director of Alphabet, Inc., 45 years old
- Jeffrey Brown, CEO & Director of Ally Financial, 45 years old
It certainly does look like there is a changing of the guard when it comes to the age of CEO right now. Think about all of those dot.com entrepreneurs who made millions before they were even 30 years old. There are stories all over Silicon Valley of overnight CEO successes. The narratives are all the same: you just need some angel investors, a great idea, an IPO and the world is yours . . .
— WE INTERRUPT THIS BLOG FOR A VERY IMPORTANT MESSAGE —
Enter 2007-2008, when the United States experienced a financial crisis termed the “Great Recession”, which was compared to the “Great Depression” of the 1930’s. There is one thing a financial crisis will always teach you about leadership — when there is concern about financial stability, constant scrutiny, a complete lack of accountability, and a loss of trust by the American people, it’s time to bring in the old guard who can handle these situations.
“Be fearful when others are greedy, be greedy when other people are fearful.”
— Warren Buffett
May I introduce you to a few veterans who can fix just about anything who just so happen to be in the Fortune Top 100 CEO’s Listing:
- Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, 85 years old
- Sheldon G. Anderson, CEO of the Las Vegas Sands, 82 years old
- Roger Penske, CEO of the Penske Automotive Group, 79 years old
- Allan Miller, CEO and Chairman of Universal Health Services, 77 years old
You may have noticed, but we just took a 180º from the beginning of the blog to this point. It was necessary to prove my position and bring you back to reality: where leadership is developed through a mindset of skills and behaviors that require experience, and experience equals time.
There is no rule that says, “you must be this age to lead”, but there are considerations that come into play in order to maintain the tremendous pace and deal with the immense pressures of being a leader and having accountability for the success of the people under your direction and the profitability of the company.
Are there exceptions to the rule? No doubt there are, there are exceptions to every rule. However, when discussing leadership, don’t follow the “get rich quick method” because you will be the first to fail. If you don’t respect the process, you won’t experience the rewards.
The key is to focus on YOU. What are your aspirations? What are your goals? What are your strengths?
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO ACCOMPLISH, AND HOW ARE YOU GOING TO GET THERE?
This is your legacy — create it page by page in tremendous detail and explanation so others can learn from your journey.
To an extent, leadership is like beauty; it’s hard to define, but you
know it when you see it.
If you aspire to be a leader, do it for the right reasons – to inspire and empower others. Leadership is all about giving more than you take. Don’t graduate from college and expect the “golden egg”, start from the bottom and learn every function of the profession you strive to make a difference. No shortcuts, no excuses; put in the hard work and the blue sky can be yours.
As I wrap this up, here are a few facts for you to ponder:
Most CEOs range in age from 47 – 63 years old
The average tenure of a CEO is 9.7 years for Fortune 500 companies
VENTURE + LEAD + PROSPER
Humbled to lead,
#chargeup #lessonsinleadership #leadership #lead #process #patience #change #venture #lead #prosper #reflect #inspire #empower #motivate #beyou #gratitude #integrity #starttoday #humilty
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