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The biggest decision facing the Fletcher Building board is the appointment of a new permanent chief executive.
Should they appoint an individual with similar characteristics to Mark Adamson, the former chief executive, or should they be looking for someone completely different?
At the phone conference after the profit downgrade, chairman Sir Ralph Norris was asked: "What type of person are you looking for, is it someone that takes more costs out, consolidates, restructures or looks to grow?"
Sir Ralph replied: "I think it is a combination of all of the above; we are focused on ensuring that this organisation is operating effectively and efficiently and our cost base will always be a focus. Obviously, growth will be an area we will be concentrating on. We will be looking for someone who is well rounded, has a good mix of skills and has also demonstrated success in other management conditions. We are certainly looking for someone who is very high calibre and has very good leadership skills."
The most disappointing feature of this reply is that Sir Ralph should have been able to appoint a permanent CEO last week. This is because Fletcher Building has always had potential leaders in its senior management team and there had been serious question marks about Adamson's management abilities since March.
It appears that the company may no longer have these internal leadership capabilities, as the board didn't appoint one of its senior managers as the permanent chief executive.
What are the distinctive characteristics of a top class New Zealand chief executive?
New Zealand is different from most other countries, including Australia, as employees here are more responsive to a collegial, rather than an autocratic style of business leadership. This is often a characteristic of low-population countries where most employees work for small, rather than large companies.
The last three winners of the Deloitte Top 200 CEO of the year - Mike Bennetts of Z Energy (2016), Christopher Luxon of Air New Zealand (2015) and Simon Challies of Ryman Healthcare (2014) - are excellent examples of this collaborative leadership approach.
These three leaders appear to have a co-operative leadership style complemented by excellent communication skills.
They don't tell the media, as Adamson did in his December 2013 interview with The Australian, that their senior management team is underpaid, nor would you expect them to call senior staff members "old farts" in an internal email.
The three award-winning CEOs also talk about their companies in terms of "we" and "us" rather than "I" and "me".
Air New Zealand is an excellent example of the importance of choosing a high-quality CEO with a collegial style. The company was bailed out by the Crown in 2001, partly because of poor management, but it has had three excellent chief executives since then: Sir Ralph Norris, Rob Fyfe and Christopher Luxon.
Given the company's dramatic experience in 2001, the directors could have chosen an autocratic chief executive, but the collaborative styles of Norris, Fyfe and Luxon have transformed Air New Zealand into a world class airline.
These three CEOs have also showed they can be decisive when they must.
Another way to assess the characteristics of New Zealand's most successful businesspeople is to look at the wealthiest NZX entrepreneurs, in terms of their shareholding values (see accompanying table).
These range from Rod Duke at Briscoe Group, with a shareholding worth nearly $700m, to Peter Harris, with a CBL Insurance stake worth almost $200m. Harris is less well known because CBL Insurance only listed in October 2015.