Getting the right support to our leaders

Getting the right support to our leaders

When explaining Coraggio, I’m often asked, ‘but don’t CEO’s have all the answers?’ Here’s a challenge, take 10 business owners to coffee over the next few weeks and I promise you they will all say the same thing, no.

I’m not just speaking about new leaders, but experienced leaders face constant challenge and change. The complexities of today’s fast-paced, technology driven, and competitive business environment presents a myriad of challenges and incessant demands on our CEO’s. To adeptly deal with a raft of modern-day challenges we must go beyond technical training and better equip our CEOs with the right support.

I’m not breaching ‘five key steps to creating great leaders’, I recommend a holistic approach to the ongoing development of our CEO’s. As any business owner understands, running a business is a journey which often presents several different paths that we as CEO’s are required to navigate. Sometimes these fall in our favour and play to our skillset, other times the challenges we face along the road are well beyond our expertise. During those times being able to access the right advice is fundamental.

I started my business in 1986, expanded overseas shortly after and now I am responsible for over 200 staff members with turnover of over $100 million. Truthfully, no experience prepared me for the challenges that I have experienced over the last 30 years – no classroom, no coaching, no training. What I learnt was that you must be surrounded by an array of skills and experience that you can leverage when you need it the most.

For years, organisations have lavished time and money on improving the capabilities of managers and on nurturing new leaders. Australia alone spends almost $10 billion annually on leadership development. Universities offer a number of degree courses on leadership, and the cost of customised leadership-development offerings from a top business school can reach $20,000 a person.

When upward of 500 executives were asked to rank their top three human-capital priorities, leadership development was included as both a current and a future priority. Almost two-thirds of the respondents identified leadership development as their number-one concern[i]. This is a pressing business priority that is too often overlooked and not well executed.

We are operating in an environment of increased uncertainty and ambiguity, disruption and change. To survive we must innovate and adapt. How do we develop new capabilities and identify new sources of growth when our leaders aren’t getting the right support?

It’s my belief that you can’t gain everything from one course, mentor or coach – correctly upskilling requires expert advice from several different sources. This is the philosophy of Coraggio, we are a community of private business owners who thrive from the collective knowledge and experience through our peer-to-peer mentoring approach.

[i] See the State of Human Capital 2012 – False Summit: Why the Human Capital Function still has far to go, a joint report from The Conference Board and McKinsey, October 2012.

By Richard Skarzynski.


Richard Skarzynski 

Richard Skarzynski advises various government departments and agencies, corporations and health and education providers on specialised audio-visual services. He was formerly the Managing Director of a global audio visual contracting company with 7 offices in Asia Pacific, 180 staff and a turnover of $100 million.

Richard holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from University of NSW and a Master of Business Administration from University of NSW. Richard has a practical business approach and is committed to delivering value to business owners and leaders that supports them to achieve their best.




Coraggio introduction:

Coraggio is a community of private business owners, industry leaders and senior executives at various stages of their company’s lifecycle who share, learn and grow through our peer-to-peer mentoring approach.

If you’re looking for practical ways to improve business performance, Coraggio offers an environment where you can openly discuss business challenges on a monthly basis, with your very own group of industry leaders – we call this your Coraggio Advisory Board.

T: 1300 899 006
M: 0402 117 906


Australian Head Office:-

Level 1, 24 Young Street, Neutral Bay NSW 2089

LinkedIn   Twitter   Facebook

No Comments

Post A Comment