Impact & Expertise

Press Releases

  • October 25, 2012
  • In a Two-Speed Economy, Leaders Need to Think Differently About Their Role

  • CEOs Tell BCG How They Straddle Two Different Worlds: Starbucks Holds Annual Meetings for Parents in China, While the Board of Siemens Hits the Ground in Emerging Markets

BOSTON, October 25, 2012—Today’s two-speed world creates unprecedented challenges for chief executives. They must fold emerging-market businesses into the core of their companies, generate predictable returns from their still sizable mature-market businesses, create a culture that is relevant globally, and be viewed as an authentic and credible leader in many different markets.

To understand how companies are navigating these two worlds, The Boston Consulting Group has been interviewing chief executives. In the first set of interviews, we spoke with Nils S. Andersen of A.P. Moller-Maersk Group, Siegfried Russwurm of Siemens Industry Sector, Howard Schultz of Starbucks, and Jean-Pascal Tricoire of Schneider Electric.

These CEOs and their companies are coming up with creative and practical ways to lead in a two-speed world.

  • Starbucks recently held meetings for the parents of employees in Beijing and Shanghai as an expression of the company’s appreciation of the importance of family in China.

  • The managing board of Siemens frequently visits emerging markets. Rather than simply hold court in a conference room, the ten board members fan out into the field and visit with customers and government officials.

  •  Schneider Electric’s Tricoire frequently travels alone to countries to capture an unfiltered view of the local people and operations.

  • Maersk has decentralized its organization so that executives closest to the market have the authority to act swiftly in response to developments., BCG’s online site, features videos of three of the interviews and written transcripts of all four.

The series of interviews is ongoing. In the coming weeks, BCG will be releasing video of interviews with Dieter Zetsche of Daimler and Lorenzo Zambrano of Cemex, among others.

The interviews can be viewed at

To learn more, please contact Eric Gregoire at +1 617 850 3783 or

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About The Boston Consulting Group

The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is a global management consulting firm and the world's leading advisor on business strategy. We partner with clients from the private, public, and not-for-profit sectors in all regions to identify their highest-value opportunities, address their most critical challenges, and transform their enterprises. Our customized approach combines deep insight into the dynamics of companies and markets with close collaboration at all levels of the client organization. This ensures that our clients achieve sustainable competitive advantage, build more capable organizations, and secure lasting results. Founded in 1963, BCG is a private company with 81 offices in 45 countries.

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