Why the South Will Lead in the Global Tilt

Harvard Business Review

As Keith Sherin, GE's chief financial officer, explained, "This is where the growth is. When news broke recently that Brazilian investment firm 3G Capital was teaming with Berkshire Hathaway to buy Heinz for $28 billion, some people noted that the deal marked a resurgence in M&A activity. Maybe so, but I see it as part of a bigger, more formidable trend that has vast implications for the future of almost every business: what I call the global tilt.

The Problem with the CEO’s Job Title

Harvard Business Review

The title Chief Executive Officer is something of a misnomer. An effective CEO makes things happen principally through his executive colleagues, aptly called “Chiefs” too: the CFO, CCO, and COO.

Bureaucracy is a Bogeyman

Harvard Business Review

And then there was the person at the top – the Chief Financial Officer in this case, to whom we eventually wrote a letter (just at the point, as it happened, when the money finally arrived). Think back, one more time, to the global financial crisis and what caused it. And the result, as with my unpaid invoice, was that the outside world ended up owning the problem (risk) and its consequences (financial meltdown).

Can Your C-Suite Handle Big Data?

Harvard Business Review

The chief financial officer (CFO) role rose to prominence in the mid -1980’s as pressures for value management and more transparent investor relations gained traction. Adding a chief marketing officer (CMO) became crucial as new channels and media raised the complexity of brand building, while Chief strategy officers (CSOs) joined top teams to help grapple with complex and fast-changing global markets.

Why the South Will Lead in the Global Tilt

Harvard Business Review

As Keith Sherin, GE's chief financial officer, explained, "This is where the growth is. When news broke recently that Brazilian investment firm 3G Capital was teaming with Berkshire Hathaway to buy Heinz for $28 billion, some people noted that the deal marked a resurgence in M&A activity. Maybe so, but I see it as part of a bigger, more formidable trend that has vast implications for the future of almost every business: what I call the global tilt.

How Share-Price Fixation Killed Enron

Harvard Business Review

Despite its infamous financial chicanery, it still appeared to be a viable, profitable firm. At the annual conference of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners late last month, former Enron Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow, who served six years in prison for his part in Enron''s deceptions, offered an explanation. But after hearing Fastow speak twice to my Financial Statement Accounting class and reviewing independent evidence, I think I have good idea.

The Most Important Negotiation in Your Life

Harvard Business Review

Whether they''re pitching to a customer in an office, brokering a peace deal at Camp David, or arguing over curfew at the kitchen table, negotiators are people trying to persuade other people of their point of view. The Big Four are: The Chief Executive Officer: your inner Dreamer. The Chief Financial Officer: your inner Thinker. The Chief Operating Officer: your inner Warrior. Life is a series of negotiations.

An Activist Investor Lands in Your Boardroom — Now What?

Harvard Business Review

More than 200 activist-investor initiatives hit companies in 2013, a seven-fold increase over a decade earlier. But Motorola’s markets were transforming in the mid-2000s, and chief executive Greg Brown and his board decided in March 2008 that the company should be split in two: Motorola Mobility would take its mobile phones and related devices, and Motorola Solutions its mission-critical data and communication products.