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The CEO Within: Why Inside Outsiders Are the Key to Succession Hardcover – November 13, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-1422104613 ISBN-10: 1422104613 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press; 1 edition (November 13, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1422104613
  • ISBN-13: 978-1422104613
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,647,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


The CEO Within is a breakthrough in CEO succession. Bower stands tall in producing research-based management concepts for practitioners. --Ram Charan, CEO advisor and co-author of the bestselling Execution

...the best leaders are people from inside the company who somehow have maintained enough detachment from the local traditions, ideology and shibboleths that they have retained the objectivity of an outsider. --Forbes, December 11, 2007

The process of CEO succession is a critical part of the way you run a company, not something separate... --CNNMoney.com, February 15, 2008

About the Author

Joseph L. Bower is Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He currently serves as Chair of the Corporate Leader program at Harvard Business School and is on the Board of Directors of several corporations.

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli HALL OF FAME on November 14, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Major companies constantly make decisions that carry enormous consequences: how and where to invest their money, what new product or service to introduce, and which market to retreat from or penetrate. But Joseph L. Bower, a Harvard Business School faculty member for more than 40 years, believes that selecting the right CEO is a company's most important decision. So why, he wonders, do so many organizations select the wrong person? In this intelligent, well-written and insightful book on corporate leadership, Bower examines the CEO succession process and postulates that maybe the old-boy network isn't so terrific after all. He says smart corporations hand the ball off to "Inside Outsiders," executives within the company who know how to play the game but aren't afraid to try some trick plays. Bower's inside-outsider poster child is Jack Welch, the engineer who became General Electric's amazingly successful CEO. Whether your company's CEO is about to retire or has just been installed, we strongly recommend this interesting, instructive book. After all, you don't want to wind up on the outside looking in.
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By Bo on January 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The CEO within is one of the best business books I have ever read. If you are a chairman, you need think about succession and how to make the most value out of a CEO leaving. As a person in a company, aiming for the top job, this is the best input on your path.

It relates to an ever increasing problem of screening - beyond personal marketing campaigns and egos, seeking authentic leaders and strong integrity. The book adequately balances theory with practical empirical examples and most of all, hits the nerve of the challenges being a chairman. As a chairman, unless you identify your inside outsiders, you clearly run a big risk of failure in appointing the next CEO.
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