Management Lessons Learned Over Small Talk

management lessons learned-over small talk multibradmedia

Last week in our blog, we relayed the management lessons that we learned from the dog that lives in our Dallas offices. This week, we have chosen to pass along lessons we’ve learned from a group of more esteemed and experienced senior executives.

Since MBMI was founded in 2010, members of our management team have been privileged to meet and speak with some of the world’s top managers, like media moguls Barry Diller and Jonathan Newhouse, Coca Cola CEO Muhtar Kent, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, renowned chef Rainer Becker, and Hublot Watch Company’s Chairman, Jean Claude Biver.

To simply listen to these industry leaders’ conversations and insights is akin to taking Doctorate level courses at the finest universities. So, this week, our blog passes along a few pearls of wisdom and thought-provoking ideas and observations from each of the people previously mentioned, as Management Lessons Learned Over Small Talk.

I never thought I was a very good manager.Barry Diller

Really? We think the opposite. Mr. Diller’s documented successes as Chairman of Expedia, one of the world’s most successful travel companies, as the creator of Fox Broadcasting Company and USA Network, and as a leader in the Democratic Party, paint him as an incredible manager. Numbers don’t lie and Mr. Diller’s resume as an entertainment executive manager is beyond reproach.

So what did we learn from Mr. Diller?

We learned that, from time to time, we all doubt ourselves. We also learned that a certain amount of humility is an important key to success. Finally, we learned that introspection allows for immediate and long-term improvement that can only benefit the businesses we manage. The next time you’re sure you have an answer, ask yourself if you’re infallible (You’re not). Review your decision before you risk your cashflow, but if your decision stands up to muster, don’t be afraid to move forward. Remember that doubt is healthy but inaction is disastrous.

If your goal is to live according to reason and virtue, then that is always achievable.Jonathan Newhouse

The CEO of Conde Nast has a point. Being decent to those around us sets the stage for better behavior by our colleagues and subordinates. Setting tone for professional conduct and best practices is one of management’s most important roles. No wonder Mr. Newhouse’s organization is atop the publishing world.

You will see us addressing issues rapidlyMuhtar Kent

You will never see grass grow under the feet of the Chairman and CEO of Coca Cola.

Mr. Kent has taught us two important lessons with his quote: Create a sense of urgency and let everyone around you know that you are demand action. Management that fails to create a “get it done” atmosphere misses competitive opportunities and almost certainly will fail to identify the employees who create magic while under pressure.

The Chinese consumer is everybody. It’s very simple.Diane von Furstenberg

In the United States, broadcasters have a tendency to slice and dice viewers, listeners and readers. Super-Designer von Furstenberg points out that the retail world has changed. Niches still develop within consumer groups, but the more often realized consumer body is much wider demographically than what is often anticipated at the launch of a new consumer good.

Once the almost exclusive possession of the young, Facebook now exerts great influence over senior citizens. The consumer target expanded because the product is first-in-class and we all aspire to enjoy its personal connections. Great restaurants, jewelry and automobiles are items that consumers of all ages grow to appreciate and desire.

Wouldn’t it be great if broadcasters designed noteworthy products of such quality that the producers were unafraid to broadcast once again? Lesson learned.

If the baker is bad, teach him to bake. Don’t close the restaurant.Rainer Becker

In our opinion, truer words from a manager were never spoken. Chef Becker is one of the world’s most intelligent hospitality thought leaders. His cautionary tale of examining each situation carefully before prematurely reacting will save managers and owners countless millions of dollars of lost profits. The lesson? Unless the business is on fire, don’t knee-jerk. Prepare yourself with information that leads to a quality decision.

I will be the master of my cheese until the last piece.Jean-Claude Biver

Mr. Biver constantly travels from country to country in his role as the chairman of Hublot Watch Company, one of the finest premium timepiece brands in the world.
He is an entertaining and jovial friend to his business partners and counterparts, and he treats everyone equally and courteously, as if everyone he meets were family.

When this CEO comes down the hallway, it is clear that Jean-Claude is a manager that almost every other manager wishes to emulate. He makes the work environment creative, fun and different, in an industry that rewards design. Making the workplace enjoyable for everyone is an important engagement technique that boosts employee output and builds loyalty.

We love to listen. What have you learned from listening? Leave us your Comments.

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Bill Pasha
President/CEO

Bill Pasha is President/CEO of The MBMI Companies, LLC., the parent firm of MultiBrand Media International, Maximized Brand Marketing International and Valoriant Safety. Before joining the entrepreneurial world, Bill was recognized as one of the top Program Directors in America and as an authority on consumer consumption of media. He continues to consult broadcasters around the world.

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