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Stephen Miles
Works at Miles-Group
Attended Queen's University
Lives in Atlanta


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Stephen Miles is the founder & CEO of the Miles-Group. He was formerly a Vice Chairman of Heidrick & Struggles. He ran Leadership Advisory Services within the Leadership Consulting Practice and oversaw the firm’s worldwide executive assessment/succession planning activities. He is also a key member of Heidrick & Struggles’ CEO and Board Practice. With more than 15 years of experience in assessment, top-level succession planning, organizational effectiveness and strategy consulting, Stephen specializes in CEO succession and has partnered with numerous Boards of global Fortune 500 companies to ensure that a successful leadership selection and transition occurs. He also has led many Chairman successions and Board effectiveness reviews, partnering with Board of Directors to help them with their overall effectiveness, committee effectiveness and individual director effectiveness. Additionally, he is a recognized expert on the role of the Chief Operating Officer, and has consulted to numerous companies on the establishment and the effectiveness of the position and supporting the transition from COO to effective CEO.
Stephen is a coach to many CEOs and COOs around the world. He has built the Practice’s coaching expertise by focusing on high-performance leadership competencies with a heavy emphasis on the business and cultural context. Stephen works extensively internationally and his clients cut across all industry sectors.
Prior to joining Heidrick & Struggles, Stephen held various positions at Andersen Consulting.  Stephen is author and co-editor of the best-selling business book “Leaders Talk Leadership”.  He also co-authored “Riding Shotgun: The Role of the Chief Operating Officer”, as well as the cover article in the May 2006 issue of Harvard Business Review* on the same topic.   Stephen also co-authored the feature article in the April 2007 issue of Harvard Business Review titled: “The Leadership Team—Complementary Strengths or Conflicting Agendas? Great top teams work to their members’ disparate strengths—but those differences can cause discord, too, especially during succession.” 

His third book, “The Career Game: Applying Lessons from Game Theory to the Management of Your Career”, is due out later this year (Stanford University Press) and he has just completed a chapter on “Assessing the Leader” for Linkage Inc.’s Best Practices in Leadership Development Handbook 2nd edition; Wiley 2009. Stephen has also been featured in Forbes, BusinessWeek, Strategy + Business, WSJ/MIT, Consulting Magazine, MIT Sloan, Ivey Business Journal, and CEO Magazine. He is a frequent speaker on the topics of CEO succession, coaching C-level executives, talent management and complementary leadership at the top (high performance teams).
Stephen is a member of the Heidrick & Struggles’ Management Committee. He is an independent Director for Overlay.TV and DNA13, and an Advisory Board Member at Rypple and The Pythian Group. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s of Business Administration (summa cum laude), both from Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada. 
He also holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology (summa cum laude) from the University of Victoria. Stephen resides in Atlanta, Georgia. He has lived in Kenya, South Africa, Iraq, Argentina and Canada.
* Second in Command: The Misunderstood Role of the COO was a McKinsey Award finalist for the best article in Harvard Business Review in 2006 
  • Queen's University
  • University of Victoria
Basic Information
  • Miles-Group
    Founder & CEO, 2012 - present
  • Heidrick & Struggls
    Consultant, 2000 - 2012
  • Anderson Consulting
    Manager, 1999 - 2000
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Nairobi - USA, East Africa, South Africa, Argentina, Canada