Profiles in Leadership
When The Wall Street Journal interviewed Denise Morrison in 2007, she was president of Campbell USA. Senior executives usually downplay their ambitions, but Morrison boldly told the reporter that she wanted to become CEO of a large corporation. In 2011, she became Campbell's CEO.
"Great leadership is not a solo act," says Robert Vanourek, chairman emeritus of the Vail Leadership Institute and co-author of Triple Crown Leadership. "It's a group performance. You need to connect through the heart to lead effectively."
When Jeffrey Ashby, a former NASA space shuttle commander, learned in 2002 that he would lead a mission to the International Space Station, NASA had already picked his crew. To bond as a team, Ashby asked the crew to join him in Utah’s Canyonlands National Park for an 11-day trek, which paid off when they went into space.
Aaron Jagdfeld runs a fast-growing company with $1 billion in annual revenue. He’s president and CEO of Generac Holdings, a maker of automatic standby generators based in Waukesha, Wis. Jagdfeld joined Generac in 1994 and became its chief executive in 2008, starting with a blank slate to shape the company's culture.
Like many senior executives, Donald Keough makes clear-cut decisions. But sometimes—as when he was president of The Coca-Cola Co. in 1989—his snap judgments have made him appear too bossy ...
Oscar Niemeyer, one of the world’s most prominent modern architects, is renowned for his light, airy and fanciful structures. Famous for designing the capital city of Brasília, and for collaborating with Le Corbusier on the United Nations headquarters in New York, Niemeyer was a pioneer who needed to escape the clutches of fascism to continue his work.
Advertising executive and TV personality Donny Deutsch sums up the secret of leadership in 10 words: You need to be comfortable enough not to be needed.
After flying 61 combat missions in World War II and winning military honors, Robert McDermott didn’t bask in the glow of his military heroics. Instead, he helped build the Air Force Academy into a model of military education and then shifted to the private sector to become CEO of USAA.
Mark Leslie ran two firms before becoming chairman and CEO of Veritas Software in 1990. He knew from experience that when senior executives make decisions based on shared information with their employees, it decreases office politics and helps everyone buy into the company’s strategy.
Two concerns keep Skanska CEO Mike McNally up at night. He worries that one of the company’s 50,000 employees around the world might act unethically. He also frets about the risk of accidents and injuries.