Sep 14, 2017
In this episode you’ll hear from Trevor Matthews former MD/CEO
of Legal & General Australia, ManuLife, Friends Provident PLC,
Aviva UK and Standard Life UK. He is currently a non-executive
director of AMP, Tokio Marine, FNZ and BUPA. He is also Chair of
the State Industry Regulatory Authority and 1stAvailable Ltd.
Trevor tells the story of his remarkable career from actuary
to CEO and President of some of the world’s biggest insurance
companies. He outlines that a leaders is a dealer in hope, you have
to build a track record and importantly you need to be
respectful about the past, realistic about the present and
optimistic about the future.
Trevor’s top messages include:
- Travel was great in that it gave me a global perspective
- It’s the execution of the strategy that makes the difference on
a sustainable basis
- Compete aggressively on the outside and collaborate superbly on
- You've got to line your people up shoulder to shoulder and get
them out in the market aggressively going for business
- The more you know about more parts of the organisation the more
chance you have of getting collaboration happening and that is when
the magic happens. That’s when companies really move ahead I
believe, when you have superb collaboration on the inside.
- You've got to have a lofty purpose in whatever you're
- Look for ways to move ideas from one geography to another
- To get up a level - learn the other parts of the business, ask
for more work, show good teamwork, and never lose sight of the end
- Don't take it too seriously
- Don’t get too hung up if things don’t happen as rapidly as you
- I didn't understand the CEO role until I became the CEO there
were so many more stakeholders than I thought
- People always say you hire too fast and fire too slow
- If you’re so busy that don’t have time to work on bigger
projects then getting good people around you is the secret. It
releases you to work more across the business.
- When hiring for my executive team I look for people that know
their business, expertise, somebody that will fit into the team,
like me but not like me, people of the same mind that are willing
- Every time you add a new person you have a new team
- If you have a star that is causing trouble remember that no one
- I've had a lot of success promoting people that others say is
not quite ready and watching them blossom and grow
- One of the most important secrets is stamina and resilience.
That is the only way you will succeed in the long run.
- Getting external advice is incredibly valuable
- Be respectful about the past, realistic about the present and
optimistic about the future
- You have to work hard to develop a track record
- If you haven't got a track record you should be working on
getting one. And you don't have to do it alone.
- Build confidence by doing things one step at a time. Tackle
things in bite sized pieces. Don't look for the big massive
- It's normal to be overawed to start with, I was nervous in my
first executive meetings
- What should every leader should ask themselves everyday - What
can I learn today? How can I do it better?
- A final message of wisdom for the next generation is from a
Napoleon quote - A leader is a dealer in hope.
Other Key Links:
Young Presidents Organisations: www.ypo.org
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