Q. How has your experience across industries and on C-suites equipped you for your next position?
A. The SaaS Software, healthcare technology, life sciences, medical device, dental device, and digital health ecosystems are ripe for disruption and improvement with new technologies and business models to reduce costs, improving operational efficiencies, and the quality of patient care. Diverse strategic, demand, agency, financial, and healthcare, networks enable me to quickly leverage and deploy best practices; resulting in accelerated growth, successful alliances, and innovative new ways to serve customers and clients.
Having a wide network is important to building infrastructure to drive intelligent growth. When I take on an Interim CMO, Fractional CMO, or CMO advisory role I’m often asked to evaluate and improve corporate infrastructures, including elements of people, process, technology, data, and analytics areas and organize all into a cogent short-term and long-term financial plans. As this involves leveraging internal staff and often bringing on specialized vendors, my broad network is an important tool beyond the leadership and strategic advice which I provide to my clients.
My experience on C-suites and Executive Leadership Teams (ELTs) has also taught me the value of cross-functional alignment and being a team player. Much of my onboarding onto firms, even as a fractional or interim CMO involves developing close relationship with other functional leaders, such as the CFO, CSO, CHRO, CPO, etc. There’s a clear economic value of cross-functional alignment.
In fact, SiriusDecisions (now Forrester) did a study of 400 B2B firms and findings indicated a 19% acceleration of growth and 15% boost in profitability across firms which were better aligned and maintained alignment. The key areas of alignment included interlocking processes, measurement systems, Service Level Agreements (SLAs), demand waterfall performance, and pipeline impact.
Organizations which struggled to align had barriers such as internal processes, technology, skills, and leadership. As companies make changes, alignment was more difficult to maintain. Some changes impacting alignment included changes in leadership, new organization structures, acquisitions and new business models, and changes in business strategy.
A. The SaaS Sostware, healthcare technology, life sciences, medical device, dental device, and digital health ecosystems are ripe for disruption and improvement with new technologies and business models to reduce costs while improving operational efficiencies and the quality of patient care. Diverse healthcare, financing, and strategic networks enable me to quickly leverage and deploy best practices; resulting in accelerated growth, successful alliances, and innovative new ways to serve customers and clients.
Q. Why are entrepreneurial skills critical for every company?
A. Most successful firms focus on “sustaining innovations” to make their products and services incrementally better for existing and new customers. But “disruptive innovations” lead new ways of getting the customers’ jobs done faster, easier, more conveniently and less expensively. If companies are not always looking for ways to disrupt their own products and services, someone else will render them obsolete eventually.
This theory of “Creative Destruction” was first espoused in the early 20th century by Joseph Schumpeter, an Austrian economist. Later this work was continued and built upon by Clayton Christensen or Harvard Business School in his famous books “The Innovator’s Dilemma” and “The Innovator’s Solution. Most successful firms have an issue disrupting their own value proposition and product sets so business leaders should take heed!
Q. How would you describe your leadership style?
A. Participatory, transparent and by example. It is important for me to understand what motivates people and give public credit for successes. I believe in frequent one-on-ones and team meetings, communicating the organization’s objectives and clarifying how each person adds value. I also think that delegation is very important and this is a skill I acquired better as my career progressed.
Great leaders listen and challenge, reward for progress, and catch folks doing things right. I love mentoring, encouraging excellence and helping people grow in and beyond their roles. Iv’e really enjoyed mentoring and advising 108 CMOs and marketing executives during my 6 years at SiriusDecisions and Forrester. It’s also important to give folks the ability to make decisions and demonstrate their talents to drive successful outcomes. Give folks the rope they need to prove themselves!
Q. How do you decide where to focus your attention on a given day?
A. By asking myself, “What’s right for our customers?” I believe any firm’s future financial performance depends largely on driving net revenue retention (killing customer churn) and customer promoters and advocates to recommend new customers. Fred Reichheld, the father of Net Promoter Score (NPS) 20 years ago describes this in his new book: “Winning On Purpose.” He talks about a new metric in NPS 3.0 called “earned Growth.”
Customer satisfaction, the post-sale customer experience and client loyalty always comes first for me. My most relevant activities drive the brand’s value proposition by helping customers and prospects get heir jobs done in new and better ways. I also focus every day on ways to grow the business, drive continuous improvements and create operational efficiencies. But customers are always first and foremost on my mind.