Thursday, May 15, 2014

Leadership That Gets Results


Guest post from David Bradford:

As I have labored in industry for 40 years, I have worked for some remarkable leaders from Eric Schmidt to Ray Noorda.
 
I have also observed up close and personal the leadership styles of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, Scott McNealy, Mitt Romney and a number of others.  Here are three ways I have seen leadership demonstrated powerfully- the type of leadership that gets results.  A great leader has: 

1. Compassion

2. Transparency

3. With Great People Surrounding Them

COMPASSION:
 
The art of leadership begins and ends with true compassion. The greatest leaders for whom I have worked showed true caring and concern for their employees. Breaking down the walls between "management and the average employees take thought and skill. At Hirevue, we call our employees our team members. That's from top to bottom. We want everyone feeling valued in the organization. When people feel valued, a feeling of trust infuses itself throughout an organization. And when trust exists, business accelerates.  People aren't wondering if they are going to be fired. Instead, they are trying to find ways to advance the organization. According to one study done several years ago in Australia, 77 companies were studied and researchers saw a direct correlation between compassion and productivity. Compassion separates the good leader from the great leader. Mark Newman, the current CEO of Hirevue, never misses flowers on executive assistant's day; notes of caring when someone loses a loved one or making sure everyone in the organization feels cared for. 

TRANSPARENCY:
 
Another way to break down walls and engender trust is by being transparent.  Let them know what the board of directors is saying. Let them know about your financial goals.  Ray Noorda, the father of computer networking, demonstrated this every day, every week, every month. He would hold a regular global monthly meeting known affectionately as "ray's members' meeting."  The PowerPoint would be pulled up and a careful discussion of the company's goals and our failure to reach those goals or our achievement thereof was regularly scrutinized.  Then the meeting was open up to questions. That was the longest part of each monthly meeting and probably the most useful. There was a clear transparency on the numbers as well as on ray's answers to questions.

SURROUND YOURSELF WITH GREATNESS
 
I have a dear friend who played in the NFL for a number of years - Chad Lewis.  Chad wrote a book with this exact title. It really resonates. Prior to becoming a CEO myself, the title of chief executive officer held some form of mystical power. You would think that the CEO was the incarnated aggregation of every great quality and skill set. What I discovered when I became a CEO is that all CEO's have their faults, their downsides, and blindspots. The great CEO's are those who surround themselves with great people who can augment and supplement where needed. I have observed Bill Gates management style for years- a couple of times up close and personal but mostly from afar.  We batted head to head in the marketplace with Novell and Microsoft.  But what I always admired about Bill was the quality of people he hired.  They were smart with a capital S

David Bradford, “The Bottlecap Kid”, is Executive Chairman and former CEO of HireVue, former CEO of Fusion-io, and a member of the Utah Technology Council Hall of Fame. David is known for accelerating the growth and performance of game-changing organizations by utilizing his “UP Principles” which he outlines in his new book, UP YOUR GAME: 6 Timeless Principles for Networking Your Way to the Top. His last two companies, HireVue and Fusion-io are two of the fastest growing tech businesses in the U.S. Learn more about David and UP YOUR GAME at DavidBradford.com.

1 comment:

Rick Conlow said...

HI DAVID:
GREAT POST. NOT ENOUGH CEOs TODAY ARE COMPASSIONATE OR CARE AS YOU DESCRIBE. I THINK INTEGRITY IS ANOTHER KEY QUALITY TO EMPHASIZE. WE SEE TOO MANY CEOs IN THE NEWS BECAUSE OF PERSONAL INDISCRETIONS. THANKS AGAIN.
POSITIVELY,
RICK
http://blog.wcwpartners.com/