The 2010 study showed a steep decline in CEO turnover worldwide. In addition, the study looked at the role of the CEO and its effect on tenure and turnover. How hands-on are the CEO and his or her senior team? How do they engage themselves with the businesses they lead? The study found that these factors have a noticeable effect on the nature of the CEO’s job: The more involved headquarters is in operational decision making in any given company, the more tenuous the CEO’s tenure is likely to be.
This year’s study also has news for those who see North America and western Europe as the commercial centers of the world: for the first time, almost half the companies among the largest 2,500 public companies in the world are located outside those two regions. In fact, the number of the top 2,500 companies based in the U.S., Canada, and western Europe has fallen some 28 percent since 2000. In parallel, the share of companies from emerging markets has grown significantly over those years. China, in particular, showed staggering growth, accounting for one in five new entries in our sample (83 of the 415 new members of the world’s 2,500 largest companies).