The corner suite. It’s where decisions get made — tough decisions that are becoming increasingly complex in today’s ever-changing global marketplace. Scaling, globalization, international laws and conflict, monetary policy, political agendas and of course, stockholder value often influence how a chief executive officer decides to steer his or her company to heightened levels of success amidst increasing expectations.
From within these headquarters, new corporate policies such as work place flexibility and diversity initiatives are created, supported and implemented. New visions of driving and rewarding innovation are seen to fruition. New customer-based philosophies are shared across thousands of points of access. And in these offices, our leaders face their own personal moments of truth. Can they handle the burdens donned by the titles? Will their visions of success be embraced by the organizations and ultimately materialize? Will they leave the companies in better shape than when they got there?
Not many of us make it to the corner suite. But all of us can learn from it. SMU Cox Professor Miguel “Mickey” Quiñones has spent more than 20 years studying and teaching organizational management. In an effort to deepen and share his understanding of what makes successful leaders tick, he heads several initiatives at the Cox School of Business.
In this series of videos, Professor Quiñones interviews the chief executives of some of the world’s largest companies in order to understand how they face today’s multitude of complex challenges. Offering a treasure chest of insights, the videos provide an up close and personal conversation with today’s global leaders. What keeps them up at night? How did they get to the C-suite to begin with? When did they face their “moment of truth”, and what did they learn from it? Whether you’re already in the corner office or still climbing the corporate ladder, we hope you gain as much insight out of these videos as we enjoyed making them. We also thank all of our CEOs for so willingly – and voluntarily – giving their time to SMU’s Cox School of Business.
“Wake up early and stay late” – wise words from the father of Gerald Alley, CEO of Con-Real, the largest African-American-owned construction company in the southwest. His father’s work ethic coupled with his mother’s insistence that he get a good education set Alley up for a long and successful journey of entrepreneurship.
From his days of being one of only two African-American business school students at the University of Arkansas in the 60’s to his early years, trying to demonstrate his expertise in construction, Alley persevered. He met each challenge with skill, determination and some really quick thinking on his feet! Today, Alley is not only known for his highly successful business, but also his commitment to giving back to his community. Spend a few minutes listening to his fascinating story and learn what it took to get where he is today and how he is helping the next generation of entrepreneurs draft their own blueprint for success.
For the past eight years (and a little closer to SMU’s campus), Professors Quiñones and Robert “Bob” Rasberry have studied the mindset of hundreds of CEOs in North Texas. The annual survey of CEO perceptions, challenges, priorities and outlooks has provided intense insight and perspective from the dawn of the economic downfall in 2008 to our nation’s rebound. While the CEO outlooks in DFW may have been more optimistic than most markets that endured financial turbulence, the overall trends are fascinating and relevant to all who are impacted by the ebbs and flows of local as well as global business.
The 2014 survey contained approximately 40 questions covering a range of topics, including outlook for the U.S. economy, quality of the DFW labor force, leadership attributes most critical to success, and top challenges currently facing business leaders.
For the 2014 D CEO article, CEO Survey Says: Theres No Place Like Home or to download the comprehensive results click the appropriate link below. Additional past articles and downloads are also available.
2014 Results Published in D CEO Magazine
Additional past survey results
2014 Comprehensive Results
Download comprehensive results from additional past surveys
Miguel Quiñones, the O. Paul Corley Distinguished Chair of Organizational Behavior, is a highly-regarded expert in the field of human
resource management as well as organizational development and change.
He also leads the SMU Cox CEO Sentiment Survey that tracks the state of the Dallas/Fort Worth area business community through the perspective of local business leaders. He has been widely recognized for his scholarship, including recently being selected to serve on a panel of the National Academy of Sciences, serving as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar and visiting professor in Santiago, Chile, and being elected a fellow for the American Psychological Association and the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. He currently serves as associate editor of the Journal of Management.
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Bob is an assistant professor in the Management and Organizations Department. His tenure in the Cox School has covered three disciplines: communication, management and ethics. He began as director of communication services, designing the school’s communication skills courses and supervising a writing lab. Later he moved into the Management and Organizations Department and concentrated on managerial leadership. He is a member of the SMU Cox CEO Sentiment Survey team that annually tracks the perception of local business leaders in the Dallas/Fort Worth Area business community. In the 1990’s he shifted his teaching and research focus to organizational ethics and corporate responsibility. For 2011-2013, he is a Fellow in the “SMU Texas Project for Human Rights Education,” awarded by the Boone Family Foundation. His current research is directed to examining the appropriate roles and responsibilities of corporations in addressing human rights issues. Throughout his career he has been a keynote speaker and trainer, and has participated in executive education programs with more than 100 corporate organizations and professional associations. He is the author/co-author of six books and numerous articles. Click here for more
In partnership with D CEO magazine, our hundreds of surveyed CEOs nominate one CEO each year who represents the character and success of that particular year. From the CEO of an airline to an oil legend to the owner of an NBA basketball team and resident “shark” of ABC’s “Shark Tank,” it’s an impressive line-up of leaders that are featured and celebrated each year in this award-winning regional business publication. Click here for list of Past Years Winners