I knew Toby would bring some serious food for thought, he’s not one to be shackled by conventional wisdom. Toby’s creative approach is always a thought-provoking experience that gets me thinking on a different level. Over to you Toby…
Who is the best boss you had and why?
Rob Ferguson, Joint MD of Bankers Trust in the 80s and 90s. Incredibly successful and one of the smartest people I’ve worked with. Very modest, not showy — had the same sized office as the junior staff, in fact he shared a ‘cubicle’ with his joint MD. Not your typical ‘bash the lefties’ boss, always saw both sides of a political or any argument.
Above all he listened intently. Then discussed your ideas with you looking at the positives. Then made a decision, often not on the spot. And always took the time to explain his reasoning.
What are your top 3 tips for being a better leader?
1. Listen 2. Build engaged and diverse teams 3. Work on the culture: constantly
What conventional corporate wisdom no longer applies in today’s workplace?
1. That marketing is about getting your message out there: Just BS! it’s about engaging, about building relationships. 2. Your information is secret: it rarely is 3. That you don’t need distribution partners: no business is now an island
Workplaces are changing, I predict…
Big companies will vanish: there is little reason for them to exist anymore as their creation was largely about co-locating for leverage and for communicating. Power now comes from your networks of people and businesses. Banks will certainly vanish: And it won’t be much longer before the greedy dinosaurs are extinct. Trade degrees like law, IT, accounting etc will vanish. They are completely absurd and the market will soon realise that on the job training and certificates are all that is needed given how narrowly specialised and niched the professions have become. Plus a short university course that teaches you how to think, how to research.