© 2008

Leading the board

The six disciplines of world-class chairmen


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxi
  2. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 1-17
  3. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 18-46
  4. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 47-70
  5. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 71-90
  6. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 91-112
  7. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 113-136
  8. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 137-173
  9. Andrew Kakabadse, Nada Kakabadse
    Pages 174-202
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 203-208

About this book


This book provides unique and powerful insights into what it takes to succeed as a chairman leading a modern organization. Based on global research, the authors unveil the six disciplines of world-class chairmen. Leading the Board will become the standard work of reference and inspiration for the world's chairmen and would-be chairmen alike.


organization organizations research

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.International Management DevelopmentCranfield University’s School of ManagementUK
  2. 2.Centre for Creative Leadership and ThunderbirdThe Garvin School of International ManagementUK
  3. 3.University of Northampton Business SchoolUK
  4. 4.Cranfield School of ManagementUK

About the authors

ANDREW KAKABADSE is Professor of International Management Development at Cranfield University School of Management, UK, and a member of the Supervisory Board for EABiS. He has published 26 books, over 145 articles and 16 monographs.

NADA KAKABADSE is Professor in Management and Business Research at Northampton Business School in the UK. She is Editor of the Corporate Governance journal and co-editor of the Journal of Management Development. Nada has acted as consultant to numerous public and private sector organizations.

Together they have extensively researched and published in the areas of leadership, boards, governance and outsourcing. Previous publications include The Geopolitics of Governance, Smart Sourcing: International Best Practice, Essence of Leadership and Intimacy: An International Survey of the Sex Lives of People at Work.

Bibliographic information


'Andrew's research and analysis makes a major contribution to understanding the role of today's Company Chairman. A valuable read for those both in or rising to this challenge.' - Sir Rob Margetts, CBE, Chairman, Legal& General

'A brilliant book that shines a bright light on the misunderstood and underappreciated role of governance.' - David Altman, Ph.D., Senior Vice President of Research and Innovation, Center for Creative Leadership

'After the era of the heroic CEO in the 80s and 90s, the role of the Board has recently come more into the limelight. But the role of the chairperson in managing boundaries, sense-making, testing, steering and developing the Board team was not well researched and commented on. This book finally fills this gap. The impressive list of chairpersons quoted throughout, the narrative style and the depth of analysis make this a 'must read' for all who are concerned about the future governance of our firms and indeed our system of free and responsible enterprise.' - Professor Gilbert Lenssen, President European Academy of Business in Society

'Unique, in my opinion, in its deep understanding and sympathy for the challenges of organizing, and leading Boards. Andrew and Nada Kakabadse have done it again.' - Mitchell P. Koza, Dean and Distinguished Professor of Management, Rutgers University School of Business

'This is an innovative, novel and important book about the role of Chairmen/women and CEOs in leading Boards of companies- an unmissable read!' - Professor Cary L. Cooper, CBE, Pro Vice Chancellor (External Relations), Professor of Organizational Psychology and Health, Lancaster University, UK

'Andrew and Nada Kakabadse has most insightfully and surgically dissected this crucial and enigmatic position of corporate Chairman and has linked it to the many interrelated dysfunctional and seemingly unanswerable behaviours often wrongly yet strategically attributed to the CEO by the Chairman in an obfuscated manner that has damaged reputations, careers and organizational value in their quest to perpetuate financially and ethically. Required reading for business students, their mentors and idols-the Chairmen.' - Steven H. Appelbaum, Professor of Management and Senior Concordia University Research Chair in Organizational Development, John Molson School of Business

'In a broad sweep of business history, systems and practice, this important book brings back into focus the much neglected role of the chairman. It is both an essential and enjoyable read.' - Professor Roy Green, Dean, Macquarie Graduate School of Management, Macquarie University

'Andrew Kakabadse's 6 disciplines provide the framework and evidence that can truly 'make the difference' for chairs and their boards - giving them an approach to their work that combines practical application and robust evidence based research and theory.' - Zoe Van Zwanenberg, Chief Executive, Scottish Leadership Foundation

'Prof. Kakabadse's work makes a compelling case that behind every successful CEO there is a successful board, and behind every successful board there is effective board leadership at work. Only by looking into the complex interactions between a chief executive and a board can we fully understand why an organization performs as it does.' - Angel Cabrera, President, Thunderbird, School of Global Management

'This is a very insightful book which examines what it means to be a world-class chairman.' - Business Executive