Earlier this month, I put together my all-time baseball dream team, with lots of heavy-hitters from various decades. That post got me thinking about who I’d want on my team in the workplace. Since it’s a fantasy team, here, too, I chose some heavy-hitters from various decades to be an integral part of my team.
A. Malachi Mixon, III, Chairman of the Board, Invacare. Mal is the essence of what an entrepreneur should be. During the course of an hour he can be tough, challenging, forthright and exhibit the best business savvy of anyone I’ve met. He’s headed Invacare since 1979 when he and a group of Cleveland-based investors bought the company from then-parent Johnson & Johnson. He serves on the boards of several Cleveland-area corporations and civic organizations, including chairmanship of the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic, along with being recognized nationally for his entrepreneurial skills and leadership. I’d choose Mal as an integral member of my team because of his intense foresight. He’d instinctively know who to choose to make a winning team.
Michael Feuer, founder of OfficeMax. From the moment he started working, Michael knew he wanted to be CEO of a successful company. In 1988, after leaving a senior position with JoAnn Fabric stores, Michael founded a new concept in office supply. Today, everyone knows OfficeMax. In 2010, Michael took the same concept used to develop OfficeMax… (“we took the stuff out of the boxes, brought it to life, let people touch it, feel it and added a sense of drama and theater”)… to create Max-Wellness, a vital health and wellness brick and mortar shopping experience. I’d choose Michael to manage a team of fresh, young faces, because he would know how to develop a young business team and get the best work out of each person.
Donald Misheff, former Northeast Ohio managing partner, Ernst & Young Cleveland. I met Don four years ago and he has been a great friend and advisor to me regarding the significance of being an active board member in the communities we serve. Don has also been a great friend to the Shamrock Companies. He is highly respected in the community and sits on several major boards, including Tri-C Foundation; board chairman, Firestone Country Club; chair, finance and audit committee, Playhouse Square Foundation; chair, finance committee, Team NEO; finance chair, as well as the board of Ashland University, to name just a few. Don gets good things done – quickly! I’d want Don on my business team because he’s integral to developing sound business practices. Plus, he’s the best finance guy around, and he knows how to network with people to gain the ground needed to develop a business successfully.
ONE LAST THING…
I learned valuable lessons from each of these great business leaders. I learned how to encourage young entrepreneurs hired at Shamrock; I learned the importance of partnering with clients and asking them for genuine feedback on the work we do; I learned the value of board participation to help brand one’s business; and I learned that, no matter how important just one person may be, ultimately, he puts his pants on the same as I do.