It is not often that I get to listen to a big business guy talk about his trials and tribulations inside a global business. I know that I often felt frustrated when I worked in big business – I just didn’t think I could make a difference. I found it refreshing to listen to Bill Pulver (now CEO of Appen Butler Hill) but long term career guy with ACNeilsen / Netratings.
I wondered what I would do with a business that turned over $20mil a year but had lost $70mil in the past three. Would I be able to get it to profitable in just two years. I was pretty keen to hear how… and the first thing he said was “The most fun you have in business is growing a great team of people.”
Here are Bill’s four essential elements to a successful turn around:
- You can’t manage what you can’t measure – find away to know the right numbers to measure
- Good leaders communication relentlessly
- Know your ‘Service Profit Chain’; that is Employee satisfaction creates customer satisfaction, which in turn creates shareholder satisfaction
- It is very important to push yourself outside your comfort zone and ask a lot of questions from a lot of people, ie constantly reinvent yourself to survive and grow – keep learning
He left the group with some other gems:
- Great leadership skills are transferable between industries.
- Focus on building a great team rather than the exit – the outcome will take care of itself if you have the right people in place.
- Always treat those around you in the way you want to be treated – respect is paramount.
- Fun is more important than money – enjoy every step of the journey with great people around you.
- You can motivate people enormously simply by telling the truth and showing them the numbers. Being truly transparent as a leader inspires people.
Thanks Bill for sharing your experiences – appreciated. And thanks too to Entrepreneurs Organization for putting on the event – great to be back and see so many familiar faces.