How Jeff Stibel grows Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. by building reputations

Jeff Stibel, chairman and CEO, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.

Jeff Stibel, chairman and CEO, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.

Emerging

WINNER

When Jeff Stibel founded Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp., he wanted to assist businesses in establishing their reputation as credible enterprises.

Formerly the president and CEO of Web.com, Stibel saw there was a significant need for small businesses around “credibility.” He and his team founded a company around this need. Determined that it was critical to have a brand name in credibility, Stibel acquired the rights to certain assets from Dun & Bradstreet in 2010.

The business he acquired had a declining revenue base, but Stibel wanted the storied brand, ability to use the name and the ability to tap the data. He quickly shut down the existing business and reformed it to provide credibility analysis for businesses throughout the U.S. and Canada.

If you look at employment growth alone, you would conclude that he’s been a success. Starting with just eight employees, the company has now grown to more than 600 employees.

But that is not the only impressive attribute. Stibel has become well-known for his “failure wall” where employees write about their business mistakes and miscues. He believes that every failure is an opportunity to learn and grow. The principals of positive failure have even been incorporated into the company’s performance evaluations — employees are graded on failures and calculated risk-taking.

Stibel believes in the importance of creating an outstanding workplace environment for his team to thrive. In appreciation of his staff, he began an innovative education savings plan, which allows his employees to set aside a wage-deferred contribution that is company-matched. He then triple matches it by donating directly to the school district.

Additionally, Stibel rewards high-performing employees each year with an all-expense paid vacation. Not surprisingly, his company has a low turnover rate. In just three years, the company has grown into a business that is experiencing significant growth, and became profitable in 2012.

How to reach: Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Co., www.dandb.com

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