Leadership in the New Age
The rise of new-age leaders like Steve Jobs and Elon Musk has breathed a changing style in modern-day leadership. Today, the most successful and awe-inspiring leaders are ones driven by a vision. Although Steve Jobs and Elon Musk both have very different management styles, they were bound by their future vision of the computer and automobile industry respectively.
“If you are working on something exciting that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.” – Steve Jobs
Their vision and purpose are deeply ingrained into their businesses, helping propel them to the incredibly successful companies we see today. Having a vision and understanding is the basic requirement for any company, but trickling the company’s belief down to everyone in the organisation is the difficult part. The passion a leader has for the vision should be reflected in every employee for ultimate success!
Leading by Example for Long-Term Success!
Everything starts from the top down. The leaders lay the tracks to the destination, but everyone involved fuels the company through the journey. Enterprises with a long-term approach have proven to have higher brand loyalty, employee retention rates, and better resource allocation. Research from KPMG shows businesses with a long-term strategy deliver more stable financial performances. We are increasingly seeing leaders (especially younger ones), place purpose ahead of profits as the driving force behind their company for a more sustainable business model.
Ron Thomassen, Managing Director of Affiliprint is a great example of a leader that sticks to the company’s vision. Affiliprint, which is a company that specialises in insert marketing, involves adding promotions and adverts onto packages delivered to the consumers. Although a niche form of marketing, Ron strongly believes in the idea due to the better targeting, relatively low investment, and its ability to attract new customers.
Ron was attracted to Affiliprint’s niche marketing strategy and the ultimate mission to reach every household. This simple but lofty ambition is the end goal for the business, which he makes sure everyone in Affiliprint understands.
The Community Business Ideology
Having a vision is the first step of the business but getting everyone on board is the hardest part. Building a community-style business where everyone in the company is contributing and involved should be one of the priorities for leaders. If people feel part of the project, they will feel more appreciated and gain a better understanding of the vision.
A fun and growing communal company help employees open up to engaging the company culture, which is important as a study by Gallup showed that businesses with highly engaged employees were 22% more profitable and 21% more productive. Increasing employee engagement also helps give them the confidence to:
- find solutions for themselves
- take ownership and encourage freedom of expression
- embrace failures to learn and grow from the experience
At the end of the day, trust and confidence help improve the community!
To build his company’s community, Ron is in constant communication with all his employees. He believes that in order to have longevity, ideas and effort have to be fed by the people involved in the company. Although there needs to be someone to make the final decision, having input from everyone on the team is crucial for pushing the company forward.
Managing Director – Affiliprint
“The decisions I make are a result of the conversations I have with my teams” – Ron Thomassen
Building a Community with Other Marketing Companies
The needs of people are changing. Clients are demanding a more complete service while employees want the company they are working for to be more socially responsible. This community-style strategy is all about maintaining relationships with the company’s stakeholders, both internal and external. They are able to work off each other and provide support when needed, creating a society of cooperation.
In the case of Affiliprint, their specialist and ‘keeping it niche’ thinking brought together marketing companies with the same philosophy. Together, Affiliprint and 3 other niche marketing companies came to form Linehub, a marketing collective family that offers a network of marketing solutions. The companies are synergetic and work well with each other, and their relationship provides clients with a more complete service which has helped them expand.
“We are the result of the relationships we’re maintaining” – Ron Thomassen
They also believe that if their product and service have the ability to meet client needs, it is the best form of marketing for the company. He believes in his vision and potential of insert marketing which is the main way he is driving the expansion of the company. Selling the dream is an important goal for them.
“if we can help our clients to be the best-promoting solution, we can have the utmost commercial success” – Ron Thomassen
Spreading the Business Culture to All Locations
As the company expands to other countries the community culture to spread to the other locations. If your business spreads to different regions of the world, it is very easy for the identity to be lost or changed.
With Affiliprint’s growing success, they now distribute in over 30 countries and have opened offices in multiple locations ranging from Europe to Asia. To prevent differing business cultures in offices, Ron aims to keep operational routines and structures as similar as possible and the mission equal in every country. Connecting employees from different locations through live streaming company events has been particularly important for keeping people from other locations involved, especially during the Covid-19 travel restrictions.
Keeping your identity and not losing your core business values is hard in this ever-changing world, and having your employees buy into the belief is even more difficult. Having the discipline to stand by your vision and spreading it to your employees is a skill a leader should have. If you are wondering what other leadership skills you should have, find out what 2 other real-life corporate leaders have to say in our previous leadership article: “How to Be a Leader at Work – 4 Leadership Skills to Have”. If you are looking to build your team read: “Build Up Your Team the Way You’d Build a Jigsaw Puzzle”.
Looking to hire the best talent for your business? Learn more about how our award-winning recruitment services can help!
- Build Up Your Team the Way You’d Build a Jigsaw Puzzle
- How To Be a Leader at Work – 4 Leadership Skills to Have
- How Will HK Salaries Be Affected by the Covid-19 Pandemic? – 2021 Hong Kong Salary Guide
- How Recruitment Has Expanded My Expertise – Employee Stories
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