Q: What is the biggest challenge you have met in your career?
Sybil : I spent many years in the corporate world until I finally realized it was not for me. I savored my independence, and that would often clash with management's ideas, or at least how to implement those ideas. While there was ample growth opportunity, the environment sometimes limited innovation and out of the box thinking. Eventually, I realized it was time to be in business for myself. I learned a great deal from my corporate experience, but running my own business is where I need to be.
Q: How you would describe your company culture?
Sybil : One of the best parts of owning your own company is that you get to set the values for it. What is most important to our company is respect for customers and employees, honesty/integrity, openness to change/innovation, quality/excellence, and empowering others to be their best. I have two partners. Together, we have well over 100 years of experience.
Superpowers come from their insight, work ethic, and fearlessness in the face of new challenges. Critical skills we bring to the table include marketing and sales expertise, very strong financial understanding, and truly understanding how to build trusting and caring relationships with our customers.
Q: What are some challenges or trends you see in hiring today?
Sybil : New hires seem to want instant gratification, but it takes time to settle into a new job and establish yourself within the organization. Even with enhanced interviewing procedures, it is difficult to understand how a new hire will really work out until after s/he is in place. As a small business start-up, it will take time before our organization really shakes out and has a stable org chart. In the meantime, we want to hire people who will be open to new ideas, changing roles, and opportunities we cannot predict. It's not so much about what you can do now, but how willing you can adapt to change.
Q: Who inspires you and why?
Sybil : I studied music, so my heroes are classical musicians. It's not about the money or the fame a great musician may acquire. It's about their holistic understanding the music – their instrument or their voice, the score, their technique. They are able to embody the music completely and transport the listener. Not even the composer can so totally convey the intent of the music. To be the best at musical performance takes amazing dedication to the art. It takes perseverance and always striving for excellence.
Q: How would you describe your leadership style?
Sybil : I am lucky to have worked with some extraordinary people in my career. I now want to pass on some of the advantages I had in the work place that helped me develop and gain success. I believe you have to lead by example, and that means commitment to excellence, getting the job done on time and on budget, and a willingness to sometimes do what's needed but not always what's fun. It is very important to educate your employees. I want to be accessible and to explain why, not just what and how things need to be done. This enables me to better understand each individuals' talents and identify future leaders.
Q: Have you ever had an hourly job? If yes, please share with us your experience.
Sybil : Yes, but many years ago. I was promoted early on in my career to a supervisory/managerial role. As an achiever, I worked to get my assigned tasks done, not to get paid for the hours it took.
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