As a veteran of City boardrooms, Baronesss Denise Kingsmill has seen more than a few Alpha Chief Executives (ACEs) in the last few years: 'ACEs are an easily identifiable breed who are prepared to sacrifice family, friends and personal wellbeing to climb the greasy pole. These are men who know in their hearts that work-life balance is for wimps and women, whatever they may say to the HR director.'
These ACEs are slow to praise, quick to blame, lacking in self-awareness and interested only in the relentless pursuit of their own success. They don't think much of non-execs, either: 'They regard independent NEDs at best as 'baubles on the Christmas tree', in the words of the late ACE, Tiny Rowland; or, at worst, as a necessary evil thrust on them by Cadbury, Higgs et al - and they're doubtful about the 'necessary' bit,' says Kingsmill.
But with recession looming in the UK, Kingsmill argues that it's time for a more thoughtful style of leadership in Britain's top companies. Now is the time, she says, for a new kind of CEO - one who can 'demonstrate ethical standards, relate truthfully to their people and can get engagement and commitment'.
Is the ACE gone for good? It's all in Kingsmill's brilliant new column in this month's MT - and you can read it right HERE.
In today's bulletin:
Bank slashes rates by another 1%
Morrisons trounces Tesco with 8% sales hike
House prices plunge nearly 3% in November
Editor's blog: Heading for zero
Denise Kingsmill: the end for alpha males?