As of late, there isn’t a day goes by that I don’t wake up in the morning with an increased sense of urgency, focus and determination—much more than days gone by—all centered on navigating multiple companies to ensure their hold on global success. However, with the ever-present pressure to succeed, I also have an overwhelming feeling of confidence—not because of my own skills, but because of those I have chosen to surround myself with to support the businesses.
These thoughts have driven me to reflect on how this came to be. It’s something that I seemingly have in common with many other executives, those who I continually socialize with through my work and global travels. In our conversations, one constant has emerged: how we all build our teams, our companies, our success. The answer that surfaced is fairly simple: a superior attitude paired with a superior skill set succeeds every time.
I can make it even more simple: when it comes to rock stars versus resumes, executives must mitigate the risk of hiring the wrong people. The cost of doing so is not just monetary, but time lost, which has a huge negative impact on a company, its morale and its success. Hiring the right people can propel a company to new heights—they can inspire others through their results and their attitude.
Let’s face it. In today’s ever-connected world, it’s easy to browse LinkedIn, Twitter, and others, to seek out the resumes of possible candidates, those you need to build an effective executive team. And, as a by-product of being an executive, there is never a lack of shiny new resumes in front of you. But the question remains: how does one look past the resume to get to the true person behind it. For me, attitude always wins.
The simple fact is that by the time my team distills down the list of candidates for consideration, there is no one who isn’t qualified for the job. They all have their successes, their experience, their credentials, etc. Even so, I need them to fit with our culture, our people, our clients, and my team. They need to be driven, fearless and, in many ways, defiant: continually questioning and assessing everything around them. It’s these traits, paired with the knowledge and experience of their chosen profession, that makes them, and everyone surrounding them, successful.
My team must constantly challenge the status quo—it’s essential to our success. It’s what drives innovation, momentum and market dominance. To put this in as blatant a way as possible, everyone on my team must think huge and be bold.
Okay, that and a deeply ingrained sense of humor with extensive pop culture knowledge—because, let’s face it, every boardroom needs its fair share of Simpsons quotes. Am I right?