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Landor’s Cheryl Giovannoni has highlighted caution, flexibility and integrity as some of the personality traits that are necessary for business leaders in the recession. What traits do you think are essential, and why?

I think the question raises a fundamental point about the nature of leadership, which to me remains the same, whatever the financial climate. Clarity, assuredness and participation are the qualities I try to work by – to be clear about where we are going, to be certain that the end game creates value for everyone involved, and to encourage by getting stuck in whenever a situation requires it. If I only got it right half of the time, I’d be a happier man.
David Worthington, Chairman, MediaSquare Design Division

Optimism – an unswerving belief in your people and your product; realism – a complete grasp of your overheads and your pipeline; and pragmatism – an ability to make rapid and tough decisions.
Julian Grice, Chief executive, The Team

The winners in this recession will need to be courageous (to take bold decisions), resilient (to withstand the immense pressure) and imaginative (to find new ways of doing things).
Ian Cochrane, Chairman, Ticegroup

A calculated attitude to risk and resilience. Risk, because without it we won’t innovate our way out of trouble. And resilience, because recovery will not happen soon.
Tom Bewick, Chief executive, Creative & Cultural Skills

Source: © Pete Jones 07909 547336 pete@p

Don’t lie – truth always comes out in the end. Don’t think you’re smarter than everyone else – hire geniuses and let them do what they do best (and there are a lot of them around these days). ‘And don’t forget, darling,’ as my mother used to say as she was tightening my skates, ‘the thin ice is always the smoothest.’
Richard Eisermann, Strategic director, Prospect

Should leaders change because of the recession? Probably not – the same values should still apply. My four cornerstones would be integrity (lead by example), inspire, intent (have a clear focus and don’t let events overtake you) and insight (read, absorb, sound out and always keep an eye on the horizon).
Deborah Dawton, Chief executive, Design Business Association

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