Why taking care of business took on new meaning in 2020 Sponsored by TMobileBusiness
“Taking Care of Business,” – a content and podcast series I host, gives me the opportunity to speak with some of the biggest game changers and business leaders to learn how they are driving new innovations, navigating the challenges of 2020 and shaping organizational cultures.
t-mobileRebuilding a team culture and driving change in the communityCoach Niko Medved reinvigorated the CSU Rams men’s basketball team by improving its culture and instilling a sense of purpose in his players. As assistant coach, Niko helped the team climb from a 0-16 season in the Mountain West division to appear in back-to-back NCAA tournaments. He accepted the head coach position knowing that he’d have to rebuild the team and organizational culture.
My Takeaways:Find passionate, mission-aligned people:When building a team, identify people who possess character, are committed to the vision that is established by leadership, and have the drive to see how far their craft can take them. Find holistic leaders who can recruit, teach and relate to people, and who aspire to be the head of an organization one day.
Define a purpose:Social issues like racial inequality are an opportunity for leaders to take a step back and figure out as a team what their unique role is in affecting positive change in the community.Kishen Mangat is a serial tech entrepreneur who joined Cisco 15 years ago after the company acquired his startup, BroadHop. He’s the face of 5G at Cisco and a key partner in helping global telecoms build their 5G networks. headtopics.com
My Takeaways:Businesses will benefit most from 5G:5G will be an on-demand network experience that connects everything, particularly beneficial for businesses in terms of generating real-time data intelligence from millions of connected sensors and devices and creating new applications that require zero latency, such as autonomous cars and remote surgery. 5G networks are software-based and built with automation, which means these networks can be developed and deployed more quickly, accelerating the pace of innovation.
Focus on solving customer pain points:The number one key principle for entrepreneurs looking to play in a particular space is to focus on an unmet customer need or pain point, and then find a better way to do things for the customer.Bobby Wagner is leaving a legacy on
andoff the field. Bobby led the Seahawks to back-to-back Super Bowl appearances and an NFL championship. Last year, he took his passion for business and entrepreneurship into the venture capital space as a founding member of Seattle-based Fuse Venture Partners.
My Takeaways:Leadership and culture are key:Startups that are seeking venture capital need to have a strong leadership team and culture. In addition to creating a great product that meets an unmet need, they’ve also built a value system and they take good care of their employees. headtopics.com
Bring people along:Venture capital is a space that doesn’t see much representation of color, but Bobby wants to change that by encouraging more African Americans to become involved in a role like his. Like other industries that are striving to foster more diversity, leaders need to become role models and take a hands-on approach to bringing people along with them.
Disrupting the status quo and striving for customer loveWhen Mike Sievert joined T-Mobile in 2012 as Chief Marketing Officer he saw a company with a brand that was interested in serving customers and offering a good value but believed there was an opportunity to bring real meaning to it. The brand needed a mantra and new belief system, which is to listen to customers and structurally change the wireless industry in customers’ favor. Mike became CEO in April 2020 on the same day the merger was finalized with Sprint – all in the middle of a pandemic.
My Takeaways:Show up with a great team:Prior to 2020, T-Mobile did not have work-from-home capabilities for customer care employees because T-Mobile’s unique customer care model – Team of Experts – is centered around in-person pods that collaborate and problem-solve. In less than two weeks after the pandemic first hit the U.S., T-Mobile was able to
with the help of an amazing IT team and a culture that deeply values the front line and obsesses over the customer experience.Changing the rules takes big, smart risks:When Mike and his leadership team proposed abolishing annual service contracts (Un-carrier 1.0) in 2013, it was difficult for people in the industry to grasp why T-Mobile would get rid of this type of safety net. When music streaming took off and T-Mobile heard customers wanted to stream unlimited music without draining their data buckets, that’s what T-Mobile gave them. But, customers are insatiable. Next, they asked for unlimited video streaming. At the time, no one thought it could be done. But T-Mobile listened and gave customers what they wanted. The result: headtopics.com
T-Mobile leapfrogged the competition to become the second-largest wireless company in the nation with the highest net promoter and customer satisfaction scores.Mike gets out of bed every morning driven by the pursuit of perfection, and guided by customers who help lead him to a place he never thought possible. And that will never change.
I hope you all enjoyed and learned something helpful from these amazing leaders, and I’ll catch you next year for season three of Taking Care of Business! Read more: Forbes »
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