Three Ways to Become a Successful Printing Executive
The ultimate barometer of success, from Wall Street to Main Street, is profit. The fading (we hope) recession has taught us that the bottom line is the basis for measuring a successful printing executive.
But what if you’re taking over a company that isn’t profitable? How can you become the successful CEO with the booming bottom line? Here are some sure-fire traits you’ll need to exhibit:
1. Acclimate yourself to the situation. All too often, a CEO is brought in to shake things up in a company. They think this means cleaning house, and rebuilding a culture from scratch.
While that may be the case in many areas of a company, it’s highly unlikely that all segments of an organization are contaminated. Whether it’s a successful market segment or a highly trained talent force, there are undoubtedly some components of a business that need to be retained.
Instead of trying to bend a company to meet your style, thoroughly research a company. Get to know them inside and out, and understand their culture thoroughly. Then act in accordance with the culture. You can move people to a better place, but you can’t be heavy-handed in the process.
2. Realize there is no “I” in success. Someone once told me, there’s no “I” in “team,” but there sure is one in “rich.” I got the joke, but I think the joke’s on you if you think success can be achieved on your own.
A successful printing business requires a talented, well-trained and well-focused team. You may be surprised to learn that the most successful CEOs are not always the leaders who are the most knowledgeable and decisive. They are often the leaders who create the best teams, inspire peers and set a coherent vision to align with the organization’s mission.
3. Listen, listen, listen…and then speak. I posted recently about how successful entrepreneurs in China spend much of their time devouring advice and listening to their employees.
It’s smart advice. Here in the US, we have a misguided vision that a successful CEO must always be making speeches and stirring up the masses. That might wash on the political trail, but in a business, you need to be extremely disciplined, introspective and open to other thoughts.
Surround yourself with the brightest and the best. Seek impartial, external counsel who can discuss the un-discussable. Listen, but listen to only those who are in it for the team.
Now it’s hard to spot these three traits in a company’s financials, but give them time. When a CEO puts these attributes to work, you can be sure success is not far behind.
(Photo by Lisa Padilla)
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Rock LaManna is the President and CEO of the LaManna Alliance. The LaManna Alliance helps printing owners and CEOs use their company financials to prioritize and choose the proper strategic transition – including mergers, acquisitions, organic growth, and exit / succession plans.