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'Luxury Talent Management' Tackles Succession Issues

With its reputation for brand building and expertly managing creative talents, the luxury sector could be the next executive hunting ground.

LUXURY’S GOT TALENT?: With its reputation for brand building and expertly managing creative talents, the luxury sector could be the next executive hunting ground for industries ranging from banking to automotive. So says Gilles Auguste, coauthor of “Luxury Talent Management,” a new 258-page hardcover book published by Palgrave Macmillan that’s billed as the first of its kind.

Auguste, who penned the textbooklike tome with fellow luxury adviser Michel Gutsatz, cited Apple and Nespresso as among companies that have recently poached fashion executives.

Yet it’s succession issues within the luxury sector — with a generation of talented managers set to retire in a few years — that compelled the two men to compile the book. The book includes case studies on personalities such as Robert Polet and Tom Ford, along with chapters devoted to China and organizational models. Auguste noted that the next industry leaders must be in touch with consumer trends, familiar with digital tools and able to maneuver within family-controlled firms.

Among his and Gutsatz’s conclusions on tomorrow’s leaders: “Whoever the face of the company becomes, that person will be a worldwide brand ambassador and will need savoir faire, uncanny fashion intuition and, because of that, will inspire the entire organization to trust his or her sense of the future.”