Born: Brussels, Belgium Education: Bachelor’s degree, economics, ICHEC Brussels; MBA, University of Dallas, Irving, Texas First job: Management consultant with the Alexander Proudfoot Co.
Whom do you admire most in business?
I am excited with Steve Jobs. The guy is just a leader about innovation. Regardless of the price of the product, regardless of how they do it, he is just a guy who is pushing an intellectual concept to a brand. I think that is what we really need to do, sell a concept to a customer.
What is the greatest business lesson you’ve learned?
Never lie to yourself. If you don’t have a mirror that is telling you the truth about how you do business, to really convince your people that you are moving in the right direction, you just lie to yourself.
What are some universal truths you’ve learned about leading a business?
Since I have been exposed to a lot of different cultures, I’ve learned the truth of business practices is to listen first and decide after.
Another good practice is to listen and try to understand the specifics of your environment. Also, make sure people make decisions before you. Confer over things, don’t just stand there and make a decision alone.
Snollaerts on a CEO’s role in growing a company: My role is trying to make sure people understand the view and the mission of the company in the long term so that they don’t just have to provide the immediate results for the end of the week.
These results that we are working for at the end of the day need to serve a longer purpose in terms of growth, the future of associates, promotions and, ultimately, a purpose within society.