Thursday, December 29, 2011

A CEO who absolutely gets: Culture is King

As part of the work we do with companies we train to hire for values that match the company's values and passion that matches the underlying passion of the company.  We suggest that any person who doesn't fit the company values should be given the opportunity to succeed elsewhere.

Recently I attended the University of Chicago Booth School of Business Entrepreneurial Roundtable event where two Kellogg graduates spoke.  One of them was Robert Pasin, CEO of Radio Flyer, the red wagon we all grew up with.

An audience member asked this question:
“So you are growing your company and you make a new hire who doesn’t fit into your culture but is very, very good at what he does and makes a lot of money.  So who wins the culture or the superstar?”

Without a moment's hesitation Robert Pasin responded: “The culture.  That’s very easy. We learned that the hard way with a superstar that nobody could work with.  Whenever that happens we have a program called ‘Deselection With Dignity’ and we mean it because we want to part ways in such a way that everyone feels good about themselves and Radio Flyer.”

Here's a CEO who absolutely gets it.   He's a client I wish we had!