Research & Insights
A growing mismatch is becoming apparent between the behaviour of international corporate achievers and their South African counterparts - In Africa, local executives often spend hours in inconclusive meetings, happily endure distraction via smart devices and seem to accept the curse of constant connectivity and 24/7 availability.
Most big FMCG companies are facing an existential crisis characterised by low growth, margin-pressure and sustainability issues. The new, technology-enabled, high growth ventures will, in all probability, require external talent from outside traditional FMCG, if the owners are to maximise their potential.
During our recent global conference in Milan, AESC President and CEO Karen Greenbaum spoke to Signium about opportunities for the profession and reflects on the 60 year history of the AESC.
Onboarding and transition coaching are designed to make more efficient integration and assimilation processes of new hire executives. An outside coach can help the new hire focus on the following steps which are considered critical by experts for a smooth transition program.
New models and target therapies are having a major impact on the Life Sciences sector. Moreover, technological advancements and the digital revolution as well as macro-economical developments are transforming the way we live, work, and do business.
Obsolescence. It happened to VCRs. It also happens to executives, even high flyers; especially the tunnel-vision variety that obsess about the job on hand. Obsolescence no longer takes decades. It can happen at pace as technologies change and businesses react to new legislation, heightened competition and more demanding customers.
What does it take to be a leader?: Excerpts from a 'Signium Speaks' Podcast on Executive Leadership Skills
Part 3 - Signium brought together some of its most experienced specialists in senior leadership appointments in a podcast discussion of the topic: what makes a good leader in today's business environment and in the years to come. The experts, all managing partners from Signium's international network, represented Signium offices in China, the US, Mexico, Germany, and South Africa, and contributed some vital insights into the key skills and traits required by the leaders of the future.
Finding leadership fit - an art or a science?: Excerpts from a 'Signium Speaks' Podcast on Executive Leadership Skills
Part 2 - In the second report drawn from Signium's exclusive podcast, we feature a group of senior leadership specialists from China, the US, Mexico, Germany, and South Africa who discussed the vital subject of achieving the right fit in senior leadership appointments. The online panel was comprised of managing partners from our international network, coming together in an initiative that is a digital first for the industry, to debate the sector's most pressing topics.
Having advised a range of clients offering Professional Services, Signium is well placed to comment on the trend towards appointing 'Player / Manager(s)', by which we mean employees that are asked to lead teams whilst still being expected to deliver similar results to those under their charge.
OKR Method: Managing with objectives and key results Innovation management as a new benchmark for management culture?
A study shows that one in four employees is unfamiliar with their company goals, while one fifth of all line managers are similarly unaware of superordinate corporate goals. However, 80 percent (most specialists) are keen to find out how they can do their part to help the company succeed. The OKR method is one option.
True diversity is more than lip service: Excerpts from a Signium podcast on executive leadership skills
Part 1 - Signium brought together a group of international experts in senior leadership consultancy for an exclusive podcast, a first for the industry. The specialists, who are all Managing Partners from Signium's international network from offices in China, the US, Mexico, Germany, and South Africa, convened to discuss some of the sector's most important matters, streamed to a live online audience and now available as a podcast.
These days, sabbaticals are a hot talking point. More and more companies are deciding to give their employees the chance to take time out of their everyday (professional) lives, but which aspects have to be considered when company executives consider taking the sabbatical plunge? Beate Stelzer, Partner at Signium Germany, posed this question to some top-class managers; all of whom decided to treat themselves to a time-out.
The purpose of this study was to understand the value people place on intuition and its importance to business leaders. We spoke to more than 600 business leaders in 12 different countries and supplemented their perspectives on the issue with case studies, interviews, and insights from specific industries to show the value of intuition in practice. The results show that intuition is a highly desirable business asset across the globe.
What constitutes good management? How do you nurture employees in such a way as to ensure that they contribute maximum value for the company? Angela Westdorf, Managing Partner at Signium Germany, shares her views on how bosses can solve the dilemma and why a directive management style is outdated.
Advisory boards seem an obvious way forward for companies run by executives with limited global leadership exposure. Signium Africa's Auguste Coetzer and Judin Combrinck attorney J. Michael Judin explore the benefits and pitfalls of using advisory boards in the new South Africa.
While scarcely 30 percent of executive board positions in DAX companies are filled by foreign managers, last year saw new appointments soar. Angela Westdorf, Managing Partner and Vice Chairman of Signium, examines why mid-sized as well as larger companies need to rethink their approach.
Senior appointments do not always work out as planned. Signium Peru's Bret Rogers shares his insights related to the delicate task of not only identifying a 'misfit' executive, but more importantly, accepting responsibility and taking careful action to rectify the situation.
Women's Month in South Africa is a good time to share a secret - recent events give women executives a big opportunity to fulfill their potential as key contributors to corporate success. Signium Africa's Mosima Selekisho explores how women are ideally placed to meet the growing need for a new type of corporate leader.
Senior Executives are typically influenced by business needs and economic conditions. Signium Africa's Annelize van Rensburg explores how societal factors, technology developments, and changing consumer preferences have led to evolving executive profiles and a broadening of focus - thus shifting the DNA of today's executive.
The bots are coming! If the headlines are to be believed, robots are coming for your job. Or are they?
Gusti Coetzer from Signium Africa speaks to Brainstorm Magazine about the true jobs at risk of being replaced by robotics. Who will be affected?
Given current pressures in the realm of corporate governance and audit practice, Auguste Coetzer of Signium Africa and J Michael Judin of Johannesburg law firm Judin Combrinck suggest now is a good time to remind ourselves of basic principles in the conduct of business and the behavior of directors.
In his recent address to Signium's global conference, Bonang Mohale, CEO of Business Leadership South Africa, looked at the essential components of successful leadership - vision, courage and integrity - and countries that have effected major strategic change through effective leadership.
As Executive Search consultants, we are often tasked with thinking 'outside the box' when drawing up a shortlist of candidates for senior positions. However, when we present candidates from outside the sector alongside candidates from within, one with specific knowledge and contacts from within the industry is invariably the one chosen. Martin Peterson of Signium Sweden looks at why sometimes opting for the outsider is the right thing to do.
Senior Execs and Signium Greater China agree that insight into shifting consumer lifestyles is key to success in Chinese market
China's GDP growth is slowing, but consumption is still growing by over 10% a year, thanks to strong structural shifts in the economy. Between now and 2021, China is estimated to add $1.8 trillion in new growth alone - a huge opportunity for consumer companies. Two Chinese business leaders, Sam Shih, Global President of APP Tissue and James Lau, Managing Director China for the Miele Group, as well as two Signium Greater China Partners, Charles Bien and Kasper Cheung, provide insights.
'What will you do for an encore? I'd like to electrify Africa' - Leadership lessons from a global leader in renewable energy
Eddie O'Connor, a world leader in the renewable energy sector, shares with Paul Holland of Signium Ireland some of the leadership lessons he has learned throughout his remarkable career. And his remaining ambition - to electrify Africa.
Science fiction is fast becoming a reality in manufacturing and service industries across the world as machine learning, artificial intelligence, robots and cobots (collaborative robots) become a reality. Auguste (Gusti) Coetzer of Signium South Africa looks at why businesses need to pay attention to this trend and how it will impact on human employment.
When it costs a lot to win a customer with a high lifetime value, Customer Experience assumes central importance. Clive Sugars of Signium UK looks at what it is, where it sits and the kind of people you should be hiring for it.
Following interviews with leading executives, Signium's Paul Kaye and Helene Landre look at the skills and attributes required to succeed in Food Service, and how they differ from the traditional branded food manufacturing sector.
Myanmar is growing at a strong rate – and its Pharma market is expected to mirror this growth over the next 5 years. Roche was one of the first Big Pharma companies to see the opportunity. Signium Myanmar's Linda Gadd and Michael Coyet talk to Roche General Manager, Mark Lewis, about their experience, his inclusive leadership style and what advice he would have for multinationals looking to locate in Myanmar.
Industry Insights: How Venture Capital is fueling Innovation in Food and big Brands step up to match pace
'Flexitarians' and a distrust of 'Big Food' are driving major changes in the food market. And venture capitalists are inserting themselves in the process. Ann Frances Kelly of Signium Germany looks at the future of food and speaks to food industry experts.
Signium's first bi-annual meeting focused on digital content and delivery. A presentation on the digital future by Christoph Bornschein, CEO of international digital transformation agency TLGG kicked off the event. It was as unnerving as it was eye-opening. Companies that survive the digital era will place digital at the heart of the organisation - before people, processes and structure - and develop the flexibility to make decisions quickly. And they will not hire a Head of Digital.
A predilection for imported brands that signify quality means that Emerging Markets represent tremendous opportunities for established brands. But the landscape is far from uniform and great care must be taken to get it right. Signium South Africa's Auguste Coetzer and Annelize van Rensburg look at how to take advantage of what might be the last great opportunity for brands.
As more brands take their digital marketing in-house, they need to be careful not to throw the baby out with the bathwater
More and more consumer brands are taking their digital marketing in-house and abandoning agencies. Helene Landre of Signium Belgium looks at the reasons behind this and the dangers involved as companies progress along their digital evolutionary path.
For Challenger brands, attitude is everything. Here’s how to make sure your senior hires don’t fall into the 89% of hires that fail due to attitudinal misfit.
Business people tend to refer to 'Challenger brands’ as though they are all much the same. Far from it. Matthew Dallisson looks here at the different types of Challengers and how attitude is critical for them. Matt also explains why attitudinal fit for senior hires is crucial for these growing companies; how so many get it wrong and key questions to ask to enhance your chances of success.
As technology brings all the Life Science players together, leadership recruiting shifts to 'big picture' people
Angela Westdorf, Partner Signium Germany, discusses digital healthcare and its implications for the industry and future leaders.
Paul Holland, Partner Signium Ireland, discusses the important role of an organization's Chief Cybersecurity Officer.
Horst Neller, Managing Partner and Vice Chairman of Signium, talks about databases, contacting candidates directly and the science and art of identifying, evaluating, choosing, committing and recruiting ideal candidates.
Experts believe Cognitive Computing heralds a new computer era. Their vision is for cognitive and comprehensive systems to replace today's computers.
Paul Holland, Consulting Partner at Signium Ireland, discusses emotional intelligence. (posted via LinkedIn)
At an international conference of leading Executive Search professionals from 5 continents hosted by Signium Ireland in Dublin recently; among a much broader range of topics delegates discussed in some detail the benefits of international mobility, experience and cultural fit for current and future business leaders.