To lead an ecosystem, the CEO must 🚩 first become a student of the #ecosystem

In order to lead an ecosystem, the CEO must 🚩 first become a student of the #ecosystem .

This is Korn Ferry’s conclusion after interviewing board directors/CEOs from 311 North American companies across 11 industries.





A few interesting soundbites:


They must become a different type of CEO: an enterprise leader who also stewards the ecosystem in which their business operates, including customers, suppliers, partners, competitors, governments, and their local community.



To do that:


🗺️ CEOs must map her ecosystem. She must seek to understand:


The strengths, vulnerabilities, and relative contributions of each ecosystem member

The linkages that make entities dependent on one another

How outside influences could compromise the ecosystem’s ability to function

The extent to which ecosystem members are able to adapt to a changing environment


✔️ And perhaps most importantly, where there are opportunities for mutual benefit, competition notwithstanding.



💡 CEOs who step into an expanded role leading and shepherding the ecosystem must unite their various stakeholders around an objective that is advantageous for each player individually, as well as for the broader ecosystem.

It could be a shared interest or a shared pain point, but more and more, it’s a shared purpose,



🗽CEOs must cultivate an enterprise mindset and an ecosystem skillset.


This requires CEOs to consider not only the success of their enterprise but also how they can help architect a healthy network in which their business, and broader society, can thrive.


✔️ The ability to balance stakeholder needs, seeking opportunities to generate shared value and to turn competitors into collaborators.


✔️ The ability to lead by influence with little to no formal authority, relying on reputation and the respect of peers, a mastery of the ecosystem landscape, a commitment to win-win outcomes, and a willingness to compromise when they aren’t possible.




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Check Partner Insight breakdown of what a successful ecosystem strategy means and why do you need one.


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