Disclosure: My company, N2growth has worked with many of the organizations represented on this list.
Lots of executives aspire to become a CEO, but few actually possess the leadership chops to pull it off. As someone who earns their living as a leadership advisor to Fortune 500 CEOs, I always keep a sharp eye peeled for up and coming leaders. The 10 leaders profiled below represent different industries, different disciplines, and even a few different countries, but they all share one thing in common - they're all CEO ready. Meet my predictions (in no particular order) for the next crop of chief executives...
Simon Bond, Chief Marketing Officer, BBDO
You have to love an Oxford educated guy from London whose name is Bond, Simon Bond. Having spent the last decade at BBDO between London, Paris, Dubai, Singapore, and Japan, he's now settled into New York in his role of CMO. Simon is a master of global marketing having helped shape the digital, mobile and social strategies of some of the biggest brands on the planet. When I referred to him as settling in, I'm not sure he really ever settles in - he's a sub 3hr marathon runner. It won't be long before Mr. Bond begins applying his craft as a CEO somewhere...
Gisel Ruiz, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Walmart U.S.
Ruiz began her career at Walmart in the management training program in 1992. Since that time she's held a broad range of leadership positions most recently having served as Walmart's EVP of People responsible for human resources and store innovations for more than 1.2 million associates. As COO, she's now responsible for the companies U.S. operations, which include more than 3,900 locations, and $260+ Billion in sales. Successfully running the world's largest retailer, it's only a matter of time until she has the top job for somebody (Walmart if they're smart).
Brian Kibby, President, McGraw-Hill Higher Education
You'll be hard pressed to find a more well rounded and talented leader than Brian Kibby. Kibby has more than 20 years of leadership experience with McGraw-Hill and Pearson, two of the world's largest digital learning and education services companies. During those two decades, he's held virtually every core industry function including doing two international tours. His track record of performance has been industry leading in every role, and he is highly regarded for his leadership ability and strategic vision. He's not only passionate about education and digital learning, but he puts his money where his mouth is by calling for a completely digital learning experience in the next 36 months.
Jennifer Li, CFO, Baidu (China)
When most people think search they think Google, but not in China. Li, 45, led Baidu's $306 million investment in online travel provider Qunar.com, cementing Baidu's position as China's dominant search engine with 87% of the market. The share price has been choppy this year but has done well in one key area: It has outperformed Google's stock. Li is a digital expert, deal maker, strategist, and financier rolled into one - not bad CEO material.
George Willis, Vice President U.S. Operations, UPS, and Sr. Vice President of UPS Store Franchise
Willis is responsible for the U.S. Operations for UPS, which means he has direct oversight of more than 100,000 associates and the delivery of 13 million packages daily (gives me a headache just thinking about it). But that's not all; he's also in charge of the UPS Store network, which has more than 4,700 locations. Any company looking for someone who can run an on-time airline would be hard pressed to find a better candidate for CEO.
Ania Lichota, Global Change Leader, UBS (Poland)
Ania leads a variety of large change programs for UBS. Previously, she has occupied several key positions with major companies such as General Electric and Delta Bank. Ania is a dedicated traveller, having visited over 60 countries in the world and climbed the highest peaks on every continent, including Mount Everest. She published a best-selling book on her experience, Why the Hell Bother? How Climbing the Seven Summits Changed my Life. In 2010, she was awarded the Woman of the Year prize by the Polish press in London. Ania holds an MBA and PhD in Leadership and International Management from Rushmore University and an MSc in Social and Orgranisational Psychology from LSE and an MSc in Management and Marketing from Szczecin University. If she can climb the world's tallest mountains, she shouldn't have to work too hard to climb the ladder to the C-suite.
Marc Butler, Managing Director, Albridge, an affiliate of Pershing, a BNY Mellon Company
Joining Pershing in 1994 as a customer service associate, Butler has held numerous leadership positions with Pershing and its affiliate entities over the last 19 years, and currently leads strategic planning and product development for Albridge. One of the youngest member of this group, Butler is well respected for his ability to lead in any environment, while being able to effortlessly process large amounts of information and achieving the highest levels of performance. The organization that lands Butler as CEO will acquire one of the best leaders and most crisp thinkers in the financial services business.
Diane Bryant, Senior Vice President, Intel
Bryant is senior vice president and general manager of the Datacenter and Connected Systems Group (DCSG) for Intel Corporation. She leads the worldwide organization responsible for the products and technologies powering nine of every 10 servers sold worldwide, generating more than $10 billion in revenue in 2012. Previously, Bryant was corporate vice president and Chief Information Officer. She leads Intel's efforts in building the foundation for continued growth by driving new products and technologies - from high-end co-processors for supercomputers to low-energy systems for the cloud, as well as solutions for big data and intelligent devices. Very likely Intel's next CEO, and if not, Intel's loss will be another company's gain.
Nicolas Petit, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer, Microsoft France
Previously, Petit held various key positions at Microsoft in the consumer and online, mobile and enterprise spaces. He has extensive international experience in the high-tech and digital industries, starting his career in New York with Thomson Multimedia. He then joined strategy consulting with Arthur D. Little in London and Paris to assist European governments and industry players in framing their digital strategies. Since 2006, Nicolas has been awarded several industry awards and selected for Microsoft's Executive Leadership program. He holds a Master in Business Administration from HEC Business School and a Master in Public Administration from the Institut d'Etudes Politiques in Paris.
Basab Pradhan, Senior Vice President, Head of Global Sales and Marketing, Infosys, Ltd. (India)
Basab Pradhan is the Group Head of Sales and Marketing for Infosys Ltd. He is responsible for shaping the Infosys field force and go-to-market to enable the company's strategy and goals. Over two stints at Infosys, Basab has played many roles in the organization across sales, marketing, industry solutions and P&L leadership. Starting with opening the company's first sales office in the New York area in 1995, Basab has been intimately involved in the formation and growth of the offshore services industry. During his leadership as the Head of Global Sales, the company grew from US$ 400 million to US$ 2 billion. Basab is an engineer from IIT Kanpur and has an MBA from IIM Ahmedabad. He is a trustee on the board of Digjyoti, an educational trust that provides scholarships to needy students in the state of Orissa in India. He is the co-author of "Offshore: How India got Back on the Global Business Map" published by Penguin.
By its nature, any top 10 list automatically excludes other qualified leaders who could have easily made the cut. Feel free to share other suggestions in the comments below. Thoughts?
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This piece was originally published on Forbeshttp://www.forbes.com/sites/mikemyatt/2013/02/28/the-next-generation-of-ceos-10-ceo-ready-leaders/