CIO Meeting #4

Our company is growing…fast. When I started way back in March 2001, I was the 33rd employee. Seven and half years later, we have 225. My team, the Internet Business and Technologies group, is just over 40 with plans to hire 10+ more this year. Exciting…challenging.

While running a successful business unit is tough, rapid growth makes it even tougher. Dave has always challenged his leadership team to focus on growth. Dave often quotes John Maxwell, leadership training guru. In 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John mentions “The Law of the Lid” which is basically this…You are the “Lid” of your organization. Your organization will only grow to the limits that you put on it. Grow yourself so your company can grow. With the growth our company has seen, I’ve really felt the pressure over the last 18 months to make sure I’m prepared for the future.

Each year I try to identify things I can change. Try on a new approach. This year, I wanted figure out a way to accelerate my leadership growth. While books and reading are good, I was missing a vital piece. High level business relationships. To make sure I will be able to fulfill the company’s future needs, I set a goal of meeting 5 CIOs this year. Today, I met with the 3rd. Andy Flatt of HealthSpring.

Andy is a great guy and very knowledgeable. I’ve really enjoyed meeting and discussing business technology with each of the CIOs so far, but I got and especially cool nugget today. At our company, we require a personality profile to be completed during the application process. Andy also has his team complete personality profiles, with a little twist. They use colored lego blocks to represent the different personality types and then each team member has their stack displayed so other team members know how to best communicate. Here’s their color code

Red = Driven, D, Lion
Yellow = Relational, I, Otter
Green = Serving/Loyal, S, Golden Retriever
Blue = Detail Driven, C, Beaver

Primary personality type is placed on top, followed by the 2nd highest, etc. I’m now planning to implement this for our team and hope to have it in place within 30 days.

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Tony graduated with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1993. He spent six years at a small business manufacturing company doing engineering and network admin work. He made the jump to a full time Internet junkie in March 2001 when he joined Dave Ramsey, noted author, radio talk show host and entrepreneur. Currently, he's serving as VP of Internet Business and Technology for, and other online initiatives for Dave Ramsey's organization.

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