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The Alchemy of Leadership Blog

Will the real School for CEOs please stand up?

According to the headline over a recent Huffington Post article, ‘There is no School for CEOs’.  The piece was written by Jonas Prising, CEO of Manpower Group, the recruitment firm.  Prising goes on to talk about the challenge young people face in finding the right career path in today’s fast-changing world.  Prising says that businesses and governments need to work together to help them.  Just as importantly, if not more so, he adds that ‘The individuals who take responsibility for their own lifelong learning and careers will be successful’.

This is all true, hard to argue with.  But Prising did get one point wrong, of course.  There really is a School for CEOs, founded by David Sole and me in 2011.  We started the School to help senior leaders prepare for the most challenging jobs in business.  Now, it used to be received wisdom that ‘leaders are born and not made’, but today we’ve realised that leaders do improve dramatically with experience.  The School for CEOs helps them accelerate up the learning curve.  David and I have been delighted and humbled by the quality of the experienced business leaders who have joined us on this journey – our Faculty.  They teach the next generation, who learn from real-life experience and wisdom to supplement the more usual academic theories and frameworks.  With several programmes under our belt, the evaluations of our delegates tell us we have created something special.  Now we just need to let more people know about it – including Jonas Prising and the Huffington Post!

© Patrick Macdonald 2015

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