Profiles in Leadership

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There’s no single method to motivate entry-level employees. You need a range of communication tools to ignite their on-the-job passion. Consider the example set by Rich Snyder of In-N-Out Burger.
For Daniel Vasella, former chairman of Novartis, success comes with self-awareness. He finds that effective leaders possess four strengths.

To create a more collaborative culture, CEO Gregg Steinhafel encourages Target's 365,000 employees to harness social media. The retail giant has developed an internal online platform that enables workers at all levels to post comments, share ideas and engage in Facebook-like interaction with each other.

Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist, likes to introduce himself as the com­pany’s customer service representative. He’s part joking, but his point is clear. By focusing on serving customers, Newmark preserves his brand.

Leaders of large organizations cannot meet regularly with every employee to reinforce important points. So a CEO needs to take creative steps to communicate to a far-flung workforce. At Chipotle, the burrito chain, founder and co-CEO Steve Ells sends messages through multiple channels.

By publicly scolding an employee, you may feel like you’ve sent a loud-and-clear message. But it comes at a risk: A solid contributor might quit. Joel Manby offers a case in point.

Rob Eberle, president and chief executive of Bottomline Technologies, cites three things as his primary roles as CEO: bring in new talent, help his people get better each year and listen to them. "The technology today won’t be the technology tomorrow," he says. "It’s the people that matter most."

Marilyn Tam, who grew up abused and neglected, has overcome steep odds to succeed. She became chief executive of Aveda Corp. after serving as president of Reebok Apparel and Retail Group and a vice president at Nike. She specializes in helping people achieve what she calls “dynamic balance” to attain happiness and find meaning in life and work.

GE chairman and chief executive Jeffrey Immelt is famously at ease. Occasionally, he simply issues an order. When done in moderation, Immelt says, leadership by fiat can drive change.

A time machine interview with the resourceful and fearless Clara Barton, who was the first female clerk at the U.S. Patent Office. She ultimately founded the American Red Cross, serving as its first president.
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