It Takes a Team: A Conversation with VMC President Juliana Su (Part 2)

In part two of our Q&A with VMC President Juliana Su, we asked about building effective teams, applying VMC’s core values to its business, and where the company is growing in the coming year. 

How do you develop talent?

The topic of attracting, developing, and retaining talent is front and center for me. I truly believe that at VMC, our people are our greatest asset. We are a technology services company and behind each service line we offer are teams of innovative, hard-working, motivated, smart people who contribute to VMC’s success every day.

There are many Fortune 500 companies that have talent development down to a science, but in my experience, building effective teams with high performing people is as much of an art as a science. At the end of the day, we work for companies and people we believe in. Collectively, we all have a responsibility to seek, identify, communicate, and embrace professional growth opportunities. In turn, the company is responsible for providing the training, tools, opportunity, and mentorship to help our people reach higher and challenge themselves. This is always a work in progress, a continuous cycle.

Early in FY2017, the VMC Leadership Team developed core strategies that embody VMC’s company culture. Each time we look to hire new talent, help align employees with new growth opportunities, or assist in defining a career path at VMC, our core strategies serve as an overarching framework. HR has instituted a performance review process that includes semi-annual and annual checkpoints. Managers and team leads work with their team members to draft goals and KPI’s that align the employee’s career path and VMC’s strategy. The fundamental purpose is to keep an ongoing dialog between the employee and VMC that provides mentorship and feedback and continues to strive for excellence. After all, the quality of VMC’s services relies on the quality of our people.

Looking at VMC’s core iConnect values, which one do you relate to most?

This one is hard to answer. I resonate with some of the iConnect values more than others, but they’re all so interconnected, it’s like a crazy, multi-dimensional Venn diagram making it hard to choose. That said, if I had to choose one, it would be Ownership.

For me, Ownership is the hub of a wheel while Integrity, Customer-centric, Innovation, Empowerment, Change Agent, and Teamwork are the spokes. Each time I make a decision on behalf of VMC, the one question I ask is “what would I do if this were my own company?” Where applicable, I evaluate if I am focused on providing my customers the most innovative solution that in turn, allows them to best serve their customers. Next, I think about the impact of the decision on VMC as a whole. Does this decision align with VMC’s core strategies? How do we work together as a team to realize success while feeling empowered to assess and modify along the way? And last and definitely not least, are we able to stand by the decision with integrity?

Someone else on our team might choose differently, and I appreciate that. We all have our own views, but our common commitment to working together as a team, like the hub and spokes of a wheel, is what makes VMC successful.

What’s the most important thing you’re working on right now, and how are you making it happen?

Volt is in a turnaround and as part of the Volt family, this includes VMC. When turning around companies, it’s always a game of prioritizing what needs to be done. The challenge is that plans and priorities sometimes shift because the technology and business landscapes are ever changing. At the beginning of a turnaround, there are the obvious things that need to be fixed such as realigning functions, people and teams, making sure profit and loss reporting is accurate and available or putting in place KPI’s so we know how we’re doing. Although we’re continuing to adjust and refine, we spent the last year addressing many of the most visible issues.

So what’s next? It’s taking VMC’s core strategies – Revenue Growth, Employer of Choice, and Agile/Flexible BU Approach (franchise model) – and continuing to evolve them into a playbook for FY2018. Leaders are meeting with their respective teams to discuss both the prospective pipeline of business and the wish-list of investments during FY2018. We’ll continue to identify the “not so obvious” items that still need to be addressed as part of the turnaround while investing in current initiatives such as the EXP Lab incubator and Ideation. We’re also launching new initiatives like predictive business intelligence and expanding our data analytics team. It’s going to be a very exciting year, and I’m glad I get to do this with such a talented group of people.

You can read part one of the Q&A here.

It Takes a Team: A Conversation with VMC President Juliana Su (Part 2)

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