1. What was your first (or favorite) job you’ve had?
I admit it always tends to be the current job I hold. As Chief Customer Officer, I have an incredible opportunity to enhance the experience of our customers at every touch point – truly leveraging my marketing expertise and operations experience to make it happen. We’ve achieved some great results in terms of customer engagement and as CCO I’m finding ways to not only delight our customers but turn them into DHL advocates.
2. What are the 3 most important components for your personal and professional success?
- Being fit to lead which I define as having mental, spiritual and physical well-being.
- Building a happy, healthy and positive environment by closely engaging with employees and really getting to know them. It’s essential to stay close to employees and the management team and foster open and honest communication which helps us maintain what is going well and improve where we have opportunities.
- Keeping in close contact externally with customers, and using many feedback mechanisms and visits as well as leveraging external professional networks such as those provided by The CMO Club to stay current on best practices.
3. Name an “inflection point” experience that prepared you for your current position as Chief Customer Officer.
When I was 26, I made the decision to pack up and move to Hong Kong, despite having never visited. This was a bit intimidating at first, but the time I spent there was incredible as it exposed me to a new culture and taught me how to become more self-sufficient. It opened my eyes to all of the wonderful global opportunities that exist which are extremely relevant to my career as an executive at a global company. It also taught me to not be afraid to act. In my current position, I must combine speed and innovation with a passion for continuous improvement and growth.
4. What characteristics do you value most when hiring new marketing talent for your team?
A positive attitude and strong work ethic are musts. Then, as the convergence between marketing and technology and analytics continues, I look for marketers who are not only tech savvy but data driven. It is important that a marketing team has a blend of both creative and analytical skills.
5. What technology are you looking forward to using or implementing for your brand?
We’re currently reviewing our existing eCommerce applications and designing a new and improved eCommerce application suite. It’s about combining best practices from around our own network, and taking features and functions from all major applications into one, single application suite. This suite will provide a customer experience that’s easier, faster, more intuitive and simple; making sure we have one unified platform across the network, and one customer offering across the globe.
From an internal perspective, I’m excited about launching DHL TV, which will be a great way to reinforce our brand internally and deliver company communications to employees who do not have DHL computers/email – like couriers, sorters and warehouse workers.
6. Which book would you recommend to your fellow CMOs right now?
Be inspired by David McCullough’s, The Wright Brothers. It’s a story we all think we know, but the journey is one of pain, persistence and vision that we can still learn from today.
7. Name one CMO who impresses you today and tell us why.
There are so many that this is a very tough one. Since you want me to choose one, I would say that Beth Comstock – recent CMO (now vice chair) at General Electric – who most impresses me with her leadership, professional acumen and relentless pursuit of innovation.
8. Do you have a personal mantra, words of wisdom or favorite inspirational quote?
“Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there.” – Will Rogers