What kind of manager do you want to be?

Because he is deeply convinced that the purpose of the company is not to make profits and that people are at the heart of entrepreneurial performance, Hubert Joly called on all leaders to exercise their leadership differently. Unleashing human magic “.

Why did you want to convey another vision of the company and the leadership that you yourself embody at its head? big groups?

Hubert Jolly: I wanted to prove that people are at the heart of doing business, noting that everything I learned in school and in the early years of my career was either wrong, incomplete, or outdated. The dominant paradigm for the past 30 to 50 years has been Milton Friedman – profit primacy – but also top-down management. I, being an eternal optimist, during the crisis had to say out loud: “ The world we are in is not working “.

We are experiencing a health, economic, social, ethnic or racial crisis in many countries, an environmental time bomb, but also geopolitical tensions. In short, it doesn’t work. What is Einstein’s definition of madness? ” Do the same thing and expect a different result I have worked a lot on these topics of business performance and transformation, and with the credibility of the unprecedented recovery of best buyI told myself I should write this book. Many entrepreneurs today are convinced that old paradigms are outdated.

What motivated you on your journey to always give more space to people and meaning at work, in particular in home best buy ?

Hijri: I am personally convinced that we can see work as something fundamental to our humanity and our pursuit of meaning, even if 80% of people still see their job today as a necessary evil. If we can bring our work into line with what mobilizes us in our lives, and for our individual reason for being, we will have won everything. I advocate leadership from the inside out actually. That is, closely linking our work to what motivates us. And if, in addition, we can do this in the service of the company but also in the service of a larger societal and environmental cause than ourselves, then it becomes magic!

In fact, I’ve tried this in best buy When we started the second stage of recovery. Then a human magic was unleashed in the company, where everyone felt that they could enjoy their jobs, even for $15 an hour. I really like this idea from boss Satya Nadella who told his team: “ Microsoft needs to walk and work for you “.

We can see clearly in your book that we are not born leaders.” We became thanks to others Explain to us.

Hijri: It is actually a journey. Our life story is how we can progress and evolve. You are right, all leaders are born, but no leader is born! We become leaders by listening to and learning from others. The four great qualities of a leader are listening, learning, humility, and empathy. I, what helped me the most, is. Since 2009, I’ve had the opportunity to get a coach, Marshall Goldsmith, who specializes in successful leaders, to help them become better, like Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank or Alan Mulally, CEO of stronghold.

His coaching method is a process that fully involves employees and stakeholders so that they interact with the leader, allowing him to decide if he wants to improve on certain points, based on the advice of his own teams. This changes everything! Because the state of mind is to become better by listening to others and working on yourself. For my part, I learned not “more” but “better” to delegate and create a more conducive environment for growth through releasing energies. If 100% of the top 100 tennis players in the world have a coach, that’s not a coach, it’s not a coincidence, is it?

You are calling entrepreneurs to me ” Unleash human magic .that saying?

Hijri: I’ll give you an example. One day in the shop best buyA small child came and a broken toy dinosaur, its head separated from the body, explaining that his dinosaur was ” Patient And it must be treated. On that day, two sellers, instead of saying that the toy was broken and that it should be replaced with a new one, made it clear to the little boy that they would make it at once.” Surgery Before he gives him back the dinosaur. completely healed You can imagine that there was no internal memo to act and talk like this. These two collaborators found the answer in their hearts to delight this little child. This is to create and release human magic at the service of doing actions and results.

To achieve this, everyone needs to be talked to, to every employee, to every customer. To do this, we must strive to treat each other as if we were each other’s inspiring friends. Every manager, regardless of his level, should ask each of his subordinates two questions: Tell me your life story, including bad moments, including bad moments. “Secondly,” what is your dream ? What is the meaning of your life? What gives you joy? And of course listen carefully to their answers. Because the task of the leader or boss is to help each employee achieve their dream, hence the importance of knowing it well by giving them the opportunity to formulate it.

What are the essential qualities of a good leader?

Hijri: He is first and foremost a leader who is meaningful, clear about the meaning of his life, and interested in the meaning that employees want to give to their lives, in order to connect them with each other. Second, it is the leader who creates the environment in which this human magic can be released. Thirdly, it should also be clear who serves him, that is, his collaborators and clients. Fourth, it must be saturated with values. Fifthly, it must show originality and above all empathy which has certainly become the essential quality of a leader, because it is his ability to put himself in the shoes of another, be it a collaborator, shareholder, customer or supplier, try to understand what is important to him.

Why has the “one size fits all” view of profit maximization not only become wrong, but above all dangerous and inappropriate?

Hijri: Focusing on profit, even if it is important, is like a doctor focusing only on temperature, when we want him to care about our health as a whole. That is why it is dangerous, because it can lead to errors. It is also inappropriate because companies today, as we have clearly seen during the crisis, are interconnected and have to take care of all stakeholders, considering their social and environmental responsibility in an entire ecosystem.

You issue a call to action that requires everyone to participate in the necessary transformation. What advice should you give business men?

Hijri: This transformation, first passes through the transformation of the self. It all starts with yourself. Going from the inside out is essential. Ask yourself the question: What kind of leader do I want to become? How do I want to remember? My wife, who is an executive coach, is showing them a funeral sermon writing exercise! You cannot lead others if you do not know how to lead yourself.

What do you think of the management of education in France?

Hijri: The major management schools are still very well ranked and what is positive is the change that started, because my answer would have differed five years ago. Previously, teaching was highly focused on technology. However, what I have noticed is that what sets a leader apart is not his ability to get the best result for calculating NPV, but everything we just discussed together. There is knowledge and knowledge, but today, we must also emphasize interpersonal skills.

That’s right at HEC, Essec and Sciences-Pô, everyone works there. What is exciting is that we have the opportunity to devise, at the beginning of this new era, how to reconcile both growth and environment, employee mobilization and profit, in the long and short term, without losing sight of the role of companies in societal issues. Today, most entrepreneurs spend more than 50% of their time on issues they did not deal with even five years ago.

What do you think about the economic situation in France and what needs to be changed to improve it and performance?

Hijri: In France, we have been pessimists since Voltaire. The first thing is that we must not lose sight of all the qualities and strengths of the French economy. We have some great big bands that are doing really well internationally, and in recent years we’ve become a Startup Nation “.The majority of the kids in my family work in startups. Unheard of. And there I say congratulations! Not forgetting that in regards to artificial intelligence, south of Paris Recognized all over the world. In terms of performance, however, we have an economic growth rate that for forty years has been slightly below that of the United States and Germany.

So we are losing ground. In France, what saddens me a little, even if the goal is noble, is that by wanting to protect the weakest we have created a stagnation in the company, with an increase in fixed-term jobs and apprentices. By making it tougher, we create vulnerability, increase delays and deprive ourselves of opportunities to grow. Efforts have been made recently. It is therefore necessary to continue to liberalize the ease of production and agility of enterprises.

Interview by Valerie Lochten

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