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It's Time To Rethink Relocation For Global Leaders

ARLINGTON, Va., March 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --  Corporate Executive Board (CEB) (NYSE: EXBD), a leading research and advisory services company, released new findings today indicating that the most effective global leaders do not need to be based in market to drive positive business outcomes.  CEB determined that the candidates best suited for top multi-country leadership positions are those who aspire to lead and have both the influence and vision to do so.  This means that hiring managers need to rethink traditional relocation requirements in order to source candidates most likely to enhance corporate performance.

The study of more than 11,500 global leaders showed that just 18 percent of them are effective in their role.  While most organizations look for leaders who have a "global mindset" and are willing to relocate, that job description ultimately leads companies to hire the wrong candidate for the position.  The competency that actually differentiates successful global leaders is their ability to influence others – and it is four times more important than having a "global mindset".  In addition, two-thirds of the leaders who are most effective in global roles are unwilling to relocate, while those leaders who are the least effective are the most willing to move.  These two realities call into question the basic assumptions that most organizations use to determine the best candidates for global leadership roles. 

While relocation has typically been a requirement for global leadership roles, companies have other options that should be explored. For example, CEB's survey showed that while the majority of the best leaders don't want to relocate, almost three-quarters of them are willing to travel more than 60 days per year to spend time in the various geographies that they oversee.

"The most successful global leaders are not interested in moving for their next job," said Brian Kropp, managing director, CEB. "Rather than making relocation non-negotiable, companies should first make sure that a prospective leader has the right skills and aspirations to be successful as a global business leader.  Travel and relocation can then be negotiated based on the needs of the company and the candidate."

In order to attract the best global leaders companies should:

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