11/29/2012 02:55 pm ET Updated Jan 29, 2013

Global Leadership Skills in the Recession

At the end of year many of us take time to pause and reflect. For many of my graduate students this is also a time to map out next steps and consider career shifts after the new year. With the current job climate leaving much to be desired, I am encouraging all my students as well as colleagues who are plotting a career change to seriously look at investing in learning essential global leadership skills that will serve both their professional and personal development in the near and long term.

Global Leadership Skills in the Recession

For the past several years I have been working with and studying successful global leaders, distilling out key insights, best practices, resources, and lessons learned. And while no two of these leaders are alike, there are numerous take-aways that any of us can apply in our global careers. The first insight is that all of them are life-long learners. They have an insatiable appetite to learn new things in a variety of areas, not simply the sector or industry within which they work. They are constantly absorbing, listening and learning from all they are interacting with and exposed to. This voracious curiosity is something they never switch off, it is an intrinsic part of who they are. These constant learners -- if you've ever been around someone like this, you know -- are very seductive and collect people wherever they go. And thus, they create an extraordinary sphere of influence that they can draw upon throughout their careers. This expansive network or trusted relationships that can be called upon throughout one's career are what the Thunderbird School of Global Management calls 'Social Capital' and it is a key part of global leadership at every stage in one's professional development.

The best way that I've found to get a deep understanding for how one can become successful in a global career -- without feeling overwhelmed -- in addition to learning from those who have made it to leadership positions is to start with a roadmap or logical framework that we can each use to develop the necessary skills and strengths to survive and thrive. There are numerous frameworks in the business school literature, however the one that resonated most with me and those I've shared the work with is Global Mindset Inventory (GMI).

Globalization creates unique and unprecedented opportunities for today's corporations to build global leadership capability among their top employees. The Global Mindset Inventory (GMI) is the premier assessment tool developed by Najafi Global Mindset Institute at Thunderbird School of Global Management to help determine a global leader's ability to be better prepared for the risks and challenges that come from working with the cultures of a globalized business market.
-- Thunderbird School of Global Management

The GMI is an incredibly useful roadmap for developing global leadership skills and I utilize this framework in each of the global graduate courses that I teach.

Upcoming Hult Webinar on Global Leadership Skills

To learn more about the GMI and global leadership insights, resources as well as join a discussion on Global Leadership Skills in the Recession, please join me for a webinar hosted by the Hult School of International Business on December 5th. For more information and to register, please visit this site.