One of the best tests of any leader is how they adapt to a changing environment. In this article, we take a look at some of the top CEOs who have appeared on the Harvard Business Review, The CEO 100 Ranking.
Jensen Huang- CEO of Nvidia
Named the world's best performing CEO of 2019, the 56-year-old Taiwanese American entrepreneur co-founded Nvidia in 1993 which builds powerful chips for video games. Jensen has an engineering background, a Masters in Electrical Engineering. His strategy when founding the tech business was to focus on a single niche-building computer chip to create graphics for fast-moving video games.
In the early 2000s, data scientists began requesting computers to perform a huge number of complex calculations. Nvidia began to spend billions in Research and Development to create chips that would support artificial intelligence applications. By the mid-2010s, its AI-focused chips had come to dominate the market. Nvidia chips are now available in autonomous vehicles, drone aircraft, robots and other high-tech tools. From late 2015 to late 2018 Nvidia's stock grew 14-fold, which is a testimony his bet paid off and this stock market performance was enough to land him on the Harvard Business Review in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Pablo Isla- CEO of Inditex
Pablo graduated with a Law degree in Madrid, Spain. The 54-year-old has been running Inditex-the holding company that controls clothing brand Zara since 2005. During Isla's 12 year run, his company's market value has grown 7-fold. The company has been involved in global expansion, on average opening one new store a day. Inditex has become Spain's most valuable company.
What stands out when employees describe Isa's management style is this one word-Humble. Of Course, his ascension to the top can not only be attributed to his humility. Pablo has implemented winning strategies that have enabled him to react quickly to fashion trends with an integrated supply chain. He has also made the online and in-store shopping experience seamless. He shared the following words to the Harvard Business Review to explain his approach:
"What we want to be relevant is the company or the store opening, and everything always is the result of the work of a team of people. The strength of our company is the combination of everybody, much more than any single person. And I can tell you that as a company, we try to be a low-profile company, being humble, of course being very ambitious, but being humble. And if we have a big store opening, we want the store to be the relevant thing and not any particular person."
Marc Benioff-CEO Salesforce.com
Marc Benioff graduated with a B.S in Business Administration. He has had the privilege of being mentored by Steve Jobs and Larry Ellison. By age 26, he became the youngest person to attain the role of vice president in Oracle's history. Benioff made games in his teen years.
His success-The big idea
Marc says he learned his work ethic from his father who had a local department store. The big idea behind Salesforce was that where most companies — including Oracle — sold enterprise software that companies had to install on their servers, they would let people access business apps from the web browser. For the late nineties, this was revolutionary.
Nancy McKinstry- Wolters Kluwer
Nancy holds an MBA-Finance and Marketing and a Bachelor's degree in Economics.
She has served as the first female CEO of Dutch information services provider Wolters Kluwer since 2003. Though the company's revenue dipped 2% between 2017 and 2018 to $4.7 billion, net profit still rose 3% as a result of McKinstry's digital strategy, divesting several printing and distribution services in favour of investing in industrial software. She also increased the number of women in senior leadership at Wolters from 50% in 2018 to 65% in 2019, and under her management, the value of the company's stock has risen approximately 19% in the past year and 364% in the entirety of her tenure.
Jerry Ndemera is a software developer at Industrial Psychology Consultants. Send him an email at [email protected] m or call +263 778 161795
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