Hospitality CEOs are strong generalists: study

Hospitality CEOs tend to be strong generalists in their skill set, according to an analysis of standardized skills and competency-assessment data collected from hospitality CEOs worldwide by Aethos Consulting Group.

“Effective CEOs are superstars precisely because they are not ‘one-trick ponies,’” said Aethos Consulting Group Managing Director James Houran. “Apparently they have a strong balance of skills that arguably make them flexible and adaptable.”

Aethos tracked nearly 300 industry CEOs from around the world over the last five years using a proprietary, industry-validated psychometric barometer — 20|20 Skills —co-designed by Cornell University. It measures 10 core competencies spanning people, execution and cognitive skills on a 0-100 scale. A higher score indicates greater competency in that area of specialization.

The research found CEOs in hospitality have above-average scores in ethical awareness (77/100), analytical thinking (77/100), transformational leadership (76/100), creativity (big-picture and innovative thinking) (76/100) and service orientation (76/100). Hospitality CEOs recorded a below-average score on sensitivity to diversity (72/100) as compared to general industry norms, however.