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What global Impact leaders have in common - New Impactpool study to better understand the factors for success

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by Impactpool

The last Impactpool report reached up to the very top leadership of the United Nations. And the UN Secretary-General referred to it in the launch of the UN System-wide gender parity strategy. Now Impactpool prepares for a follow-up. But in this study, we look at the common skills of successful leaders, what professional experience, motivation, and background do they share, and what enabled them to succeed. We will look at both what made men succeed and what made women succeed. We will then study if there are similarities/differences in their success stories.

Our research goals are to help organizations to better understand career success factors to prepare for the future

For this study, Impactpool engages an independent and external research associate and provide her access to Impactpool’s huge network of leaders (approximately 5’000). We will study both what made men and women reaching the top-leadership of these organizations. Our methodology has been guided and overseen by a Professor in sociology at Stockholm University. And your participation is of course completely voluntarily.

The Researcher’s task will be to seek common skills, background, and motivations, and identify the to-look-for and the to-invest-in factors that in the past taken leaders to top positions in the impact sector.

The researcher will publish the research results as an essay at Stockholm University. The results will also be a report published on Impactpool. The report will be accessible for international organizations to be used in strategic sourcing activities and for strategic succession planning when building the future leadership of international and multilateral organizations. All responses are completely anonymous and any collected raw data will only be handled by Impactpool and the dedicated researcher.

We kick-off in October with a Global Survey 

Our study will kick off during October 2019 with a quantitative data collection. We will send out a survey to all senior leaders in our database.

We have defined senior leaders as the following, a senior professional:

  • serving or have served within the impact sector:
  • with a senior career grade in their Impactpool profile (In the UN system context this defines as grades at P5 and above - see other equivalent grades
  • with at least 10 years of professional experience
  • holding at least a Masters degree

In the survey we will ask questions related to how they built their career, it will be questions about educational level, experience before applying for the UN and questions related to childhood.

The data will be analyzed and compiled into a report. The first results will be shared towards the end of 2019, and the finalized report will be shared during the first quarter of 2020.

Are you a senior leader, but haven’t responded to our Survey?

If you are a senior leader, as per our definition above, we would love to learn from your background, please dedicate a few minutes of your precious time to respond to our survey.

Fill out the survey


Some information to you as a respondent:

  • To attend the survey is voluntarily
  • All your responses are treated completely anonymously
  • The overall study results will be compiled in a report and made available on Impactpool for free downloading
  • The raw data will be used by Impactpool and the dedicated researcher only, none of the collected raw data will be shared with any external party
  • By completing the survey you agree that we can use your data to better understand what global impact leaders have in common.


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