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In the ever-evolving realm of leadership, gaining insights from experienced professionals can provide valuable lessons and inspiration. The Leadership Matters podcast offers a platform to explore the journeys and strategies of influential leaders and HR Professionals. In the first episode of Series 2, Richard Hargreaves, the Managing Director at Corporate Research Forum (CRF), takes centre stage. Richard has the responsibility of ensuring the growth of the Corporate Research Forum (CRF) by delivering exceptional HR content, fostering the exchange of knowledge among HR professionals, and working alongside a highly skilled team. Before assuming this position, Richard served as the Commercial Director for both CRF and PARC, and he previously held the role of EMEA Sponsorship Director at The Economist Group.

Leadership Matters Podcast: Series 2 with Richard Hargreaves from CRF

This article aims to delve into the key takeaways and concepts discussed in the episode, shedding light on Richards’ perspectives and approach to successful leadership.

One of Richards’ primary motivations lies in staying close to clients. Recognising the importance of understanding their needs, he emphasises the significance of maintaining strong relationships with clients. Richard explains the need for leaders to be customer-centric, ensuring that organisational strategies align with customer expectations and desires.

Richard explains the challenges of uncertainty and ambiguity in today’s fast-paced world. With the rapid advancement of technology, including artificial intelligence, leaders must adapt to the changing landscape. Consumer awareness and shareholder expectations further compound the need for leaders to be comfortable with ambiguity. Richard encourages leaders to embrace curiosity and seek diverse perspectives to navigate ambiguity effectively.

The Role of Middle Management and Talent Management

During the podcast, Richard highlights the underinvestment in middle management, an often overlooked segment of the organisational hierarchy. Middle managers play a crucial role in translating strategic goals into actionable plans and ensuring effective execution. Recognising their significance, he stresses the importance of providing adequate support, training, and development opportunities for middle managers.

Furthermore, Richard addresses the high expectations placed on leaders and the challenges of managing talent. In today’s competitive landscape, organisations must attract, retain, and nurture top talent to drive innovation and growth.

Leadership Content Recommendations:
In the episode, Richard shares three valuable resources for leadership development:

  1. Read – The Economist: Richard advocates for reading The Economist regularly, highlighting the importance of contextualising leadership within broader economic and global perspectives.
  2. Watch – “Make Your Bed” Speech by Admiral William H. McRaven: Richard recommends watching Admiral McRaven’s inspiring speech from 2014, emphasising hope, vision, and fairness as essential qualities for effective leadership.
  3. Listen – The Rest is Politics Podcast: Richard suggests broadening one’s perspective through podcasts like The Rest is Politics, which explores the geopolitical environment and encourages thinking beyond traditional boundaries.

Listen to the Leadership Matters Podcast: Series 2 with Richard Hargreaves from CRF and The Oxford Group below:

Listen now to The Leadership Matters Podcast – Series 2 – Episode 1: