Russell Reynolds Associates: Inside the Mind of the Corporate Affairs Director
Russell Reynolds Associates shares their extensive research into the traits of the Corporate Affairs Director by outlining core leadership competencies to create a new leadership competency framework called Leadership Span™. In an era of increasing complexity and greater demand for transparency, engagement and innovation, a corporate affairs director can be a real game changer.
To summarize, the study indicates:
- Current CADs' core traits as risk-takers, challengers and change agents make them highly effective in helping an organisation drive through periods of uncertainty and multiple business pressures to achieve corporate goals.
- More rigour and patience will endear this group to their peers in the C-suite, increasing their credibility and long-term sustainability as influential and impactful key players.
- The C-suite should welcome and recognise the value that CADs bring in terms of their big-picture disruptive thinking and their objectivity—ensuring that the C-suite is less inward-looking and avoids group-think.
- Organisations are actively considering existing business leaders as potential brand ambassadors and multi-stakeholder influencers in the role of the corporate affairs director, particularly in light of regulatory pressures.
- The role therefore shifts from being less about dynamic change and more about quiet influence and deep relationship building.
- The organisational knowledge and credibility that internal candidates bring are, of course, compelling drivers for an appointment. However, better understanding the key psychometrics and seeing how they “span” and where they will need support could also be incredibly useful to ensuring their success.