Underperforming Australian CEOs were more likely to face the boot last year than their counterparts in any other region, according to a new study from management consultancy Booz and Co.
A record 22% of Australian CEOs departed in 2008, Booz and Co said. Performance related forced departures accounted for 40% of these – the highest rate in the world and the most in the nine-year history of the global survey. Just 44% of Australian CEO departures in 2008 were planned.
Booz & Company principal Phil Mottram said on the surface it may seem odd that Australia, which avoided the worst of the economic crisis, still led the world in CEO successions.
“But closer analysis of industry sector findings shows the increase in Australian CEO turnover was driven by the sharp rise in forced departures in financial services and property trusts – both at the pointy end of the credit crunch,” Mottram said.
Other regions also had turnover rates offset by unusual stability in recession-resilient industries such as utilities and staple goods, he added.