Exploring Leadership, Talent Development and Innovation with a Local Senior ABB Executive

NOTE: I include several links to past blogs and resources I wrote that support the six leadership points Greg Scheu shared in his session.

C-Suites Perspectives April Speaker Greg Scheu, CEO of ABB North America and global head of the Business Integration and Group Services

C-Suites Perspectives April Speaker Greg Scheu, CEO of ABB North America and global head of the Business Integration and Group Services


In as many as three months, I attended my second “C-Suite Perspectives” breakfast hosted by the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce. It is really encouraging to hear from senior leaders who are truly enlightened and have a real heart for people and ethical leadership in today’s business world. It’s not all about cost cutting, layoffs, squeezing everything to make every ounce of profit; instead there are senior leaders who understand the larger picture that by leading in a way that develops talent and an organization that focuses on people in the long run leads to optimal business success.

In February, I attended the session with Jay Parker, CEO of Lenovo North America. (Link to my blog about that session.) The April 23rd session featured Greg Scheu, the CEO of ABB (link) North America and the head of Business Integration and Group Services globally. ABB is a global innovative leader in power and automation technologies with annual revenue of $42B and with 150,000 employees in 100 different countries.

Here are the six leadership points shared by Greg from his own career journey:

1. Your personal passions and aspirations need to align with the company in which you work. This will maximize enjoyment from work and career development. (The first blog I wrote – link – when I started my consulting practice is about being passionate about what I do)

2. If you take great care of your customers, they will take great care of you.

3. If you take good care of your people, they will stay. Part of this point is that a good leader needs to realize that he or she cannot do it alone and needs to build and lead empowered teams to sustain success.

4. Life is bigger than work. That also means that members of your team may go through rough periods in their personal lives and a good leader needs to be aware of that and provide support and understanding during those times.

5. Mentoring is key; it is very important to learn from others. (See by blog about mentoring)

6. Being a global leader requires a global mindset. I wrote a paper on leading in the diverse global economy (link) which is available on the Workforce Diversity Network website.

I look forward to more of these inspiring informational sessions from the Raleigh Greater Chamber of Commerce!

Leadership Advice from a Senior Lenovo Executive

Blog author Stan Kimer on the phone with a client discussing his career mapping methodology proudly from his Lenovo Laptop

Blog author Stan Kimer on the phone with a client discussing his career mapping methodology proudly from his Lenovo Laptop


A few times per year, I like to deviate from my expertise areas of diversity and career development and write about various events I attend that provide me general insight and inspiration. I especially enjoy hearing from successful senior leaders about their principles and advice in reaching their lofty leadership pinnacles. I attended such an event sponsored by the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce, “C-Suite Perspectives” with Jay Parker, President of North America for Lenovo, on February 26th.

Before delving into his principles for successful leadership, Jay provided an overview of Lenovo (link.) He shared that though Lenovo is not yet a household name like Apple, it is one of the fastest growing companies in North America in the technology sector, and provides smartphones and tablets as well as its better known Lenovo PC line. He shared that his goal as the Lenovo North American senior leader was to change this market recognition. Then after confessing what areas he was weak in as a leader, he shared his own critical success factors which can apply to any leader.

“C-Suite Perspectives” speaker Jay Parker, President of North America for Lenovo

“C-Suite Perspectives” speaker Jay Parker, President of North America for Lenovo


Jay shared three main themes with several points under each one:

1) There is a difference between a great performer and a potential leader. Good leaders:
• Know how to deal with ambiguity. They focus on solving problems and providing clear direction to their team.
• Communicate clearly, simply, effectively
• Are able to take charge, especially during difficult challenges
• Show strategic acumen

2) Good leaders effectively manage their organizations. Good leaders:
• Drive accountability and do not tolerate finger-pointing, especially when things are going poorly
• Have measurements that are aligned with responsibility
• Give people the freedom to both succeed and fail
• Recruit and select the very best people for their organization without rationalizing doing otherwise

3) Good leaders know how to manage themselves. They:
• Listen to others, realizing they are not always the smartest one in the room
• They are honest and candid, even when it is uncomfortable
• They achieve balance in their lives
• They enjoy themselves while facing the challenges of leadership

I appreciate all these words of wisdom from this successful leader, and look forward to the Raleigh Chamber’s next “C-Suite Perspectives” session on April 23 with Greg Scheu, president and CEO of global energy sector company ABB Inc. (Link for event info)

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If you are in the Raleigh / Durham / Chapel Hill area and would like more information on how you and your company can get involved with the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce (link), including membership benefits, contact Kim Niskey, (919)-360-8665, [email protected]