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My experience is that the actual power wielded by a high level executive is usually inversely proportional to the size of the organization they manage. Such executives are typically more effective at guiding strategic direction, not prescribing tactics.

Large, mature organizations have a lot of inertia, and that inertia is difficult to overcome except by perhaps the most charismatic individuals. I’ve rarely seen a leader dictate or bully their way to effective, positive change. Resistance is extremely likely for various reasons, and it’s not likely to be in the form of vocal mutiny. Instead, it typically appears in the form of excuses or lethargy. A waiting game is played, usually with success, until the musical chairs shift the management once again.

Sorry, I don't know if there's an english version, but this book was unusually non-bs and fun to read: https://www.amazon.de/Die-sieben-Irrt%C3%BCmer-Change-Manage... It is about how Schleuter turned around Audi in the 90s.

My experience is in troubled companies executives move in then bring their people across

And that starts another round of changes, which may be going in a different direction, again, as described as “history” in the OP.

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