Economics/Class Relations

The retail industry’s CEO problem

February 18, 2023


Out of all the Fortune 500 companies, only eight are without a permanent CEO—with retail businesses claiming half of those spots.


Fortune’s Phil Wahba writes that few retail executives have what it takes to be a CEO anymore, a result of the industry’s lack of a strong leadership talent pipeline.


At the same time, disruption has become a norm for retail and the list of required skills for CEOs keeps growing: “Now, a CEO needs to have not only an instinct for what products customers want but also chops in other areas, notably supply-chain management, cybersecurity, sourcing, e-commerce, and store operations, as well as the ability to build teams and adopt a style of empathetic and inclusive leadership that employees expect of today’s CEOs,” Phil writes.


“There are simply too few CEOs who have undergone the leadership development needed today compared to just a few years ago,” he writes.


That has pushed boards and search firms to cast a wider net when looking for candidates.


Read his story below to see why this is a troubling sign for the industry.

Few retail execs have what it takes to be CEO anymore—and it’s a troubling sign of a failing industry


Retail boards and search firms are struggling with fewer prospects to fill the corner office.


FEBRUARY 13, 2023

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Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 3 p.m. EST via LinkedIn Live

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