by Irv Rothman, President and CEO of HP Financial Services
What if you came face to face with the realization, that to survive and thrive five to ten years from now, you would have to dismantle your company — throw out all the old policies and procedures, the way things have always been done — and rebuild it from the ground up in the next 30 days?
Are you tough enough?
It take real guts to be a leader in today’s turbulent times. Successful corporate leaders have be are bold enough to build a culture of innovation.
You must have the guts to manage your organization so that it creates the products and services that will allow your company to be successful five to ten years from now.
I recently developed a new educational platform called Gutsball Leadership to help leaders meet this special challenge. This system teaches business leaders the essential strategies and tactics they must develop and deploy in order to create and inspire a culture of innovation in their organizations.
Among the numerous elements this innovative program contains are the following:
1. Get the results you design for.
You must design and quantify the results. An organization’s culture does not form and build randomly; rather it is built through the CEO’s actions and decisions. These decisions form the basis for the values and assumptions that will become the organization’s culture and influence every outcome from daily interactions to annual financial reports.
2. Be insanely customer-centric. A customer is a customer for life.
At its core, customer relationships start with recognizing the values of your audience. With a proper Gutsball mindset, an organization can not only match those values and meet those needs, but deliver above and beyond performance when compared to previous experiences with business relationships anywhere.
3. Share the wealth with those who create it.
Inspire ownership and motivate employees by ensuring their hard work is appreciated and rewarded. When goals are exceeded, make sure they’re compensated accordingly.
4. Let those closest to the customer make the key performance decisions.
Give your employees and colleagues the freedom to be nimble and decisive within their realm. The person dealing directly with your customers and clients not only has a stronger grasp of their needs and values, but in at the cutting edge of the building the relationship the customer has with your company. Empower them.
5. Give employees the autonomy over their sphere of influence.
Your staff has to trust that you have their back. Stop micromanaging and support their decisions — taking a reasonable risk and failing is better than never having tried. Let them fail and try again.
6. Let your employees act as if they are owners of the business.
Employees are far more invested when they control their decisions, feel their opinion matters, see their efforts rewarded — and this investment translates not only to a stronger customer experience, but an overall pride in your product. Let them feel like they own the business.
7. Never violate your commitments – always deliver.
Integrity isn’t just a word our parents threw around. Your word is your bond. Without trust that you’ll follow through, employees and customers are unable and unwilling to invest in your vision.
8. Never compromise your key principles.
Never compromise on your foundation whether for expediency or otherwise. Your principles are the foundation of your culture and keep all other actions in alignment. Without that consistency, the entire machine falls apart.
As President and CEO of HP Financial Services, Irv Rothman leads over 1500 employees and oversees $12.5 billion in assets by championing a culture of trust, collaboration, autonomy, and ethical behavior that works to better serve their customers. With over thirty years of experience, Rothman cemented his Gutsball ethos in the 2002 HP/Compaq merger, a deal that married Compaq’s global reach with HP’s technological prowess and resulted in a state-of-the-art finance and leasing company now producing over $3.5 billion in annual revenue.