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The Hero’s FarewellWhat Happens When CEOs Retire$
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Jeffrey Sonnenfeld

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780195065831

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195065831.001.0001

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The Ambassador's Departure

The Ambassador's Departure

(p.151) 8 The Ambassador's Departure
The Hero’s Farewell

Jeffrey Sonnenfeld

Oxford University Press

Ambassadors, by contrast to the types of exiting leaders already discussed, leave office quite gracefully and frequently serve as post-retirement mentors. They may remain on the board of directors for some time, but they do not try to sabotage the successor. Unlike the generals, the ambassadors do not seek to return to top office positions. Rather, they provide continuity and counsel and want to assist, but no longer lead. The leaders profiled in this chapter were not necessarily humble figures, but their self-esteem was enhanced, rather than threatened, by a firm that would easily survive their departure. Five direct benefits resulted from these leaders' continued engagement with their firms into old age and these are outlined by the chapter.

Keywords:   ambassadors, retirement mentors, generals, firms, successor, leaders

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