Born: Monroe, La.
Education: Bachelor of science degree in petroleum engineering, Louisiana Tech
First professional job: Roustabout on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico
What is the best business lesson you’ve learned?
To me, it’s to respect your integrity and take the high road in everything you do. That’s about every decision you make, it’s about the long term. My philosophy is don’t just focus on what is good for now but what is good for the long term. That’s related to integrity. You don’t want to squeeze out as much as you can now; you want to maintain a long-term relationship.
What traits or skills are essential for a business leader?
I think it’s the ability to see different sides of an issue and being able to interpret the best solution. Typical to any dispute or discussion is to always have two different sides to it. I think what’s essential for a business leader is to be able to see both sides and be able to make a decision on what is the best way to go.
What are several universal truths you’ve learned about leading a business?
It goes back to communication and making sure that you communicate up and down. At the same time, making sure you keep the focus on not just the now but the future. Another universal truth is to do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
What is your definition of success?
My definition of success is different from those of some other people. It’s that when people around me are successful, that’s my definition of success for myself. I feel that, in some way, I contributed to their success. I provided them with the tools and encouragement they needed to achieve success.