The Yoh file Featured

7:00pm EDT December 26, 2007

History: President and CEO of Yoh Services LLC since 2003. Grandson of Harold Yoh Sr., who founded Yoh Services in 1940.

Education: Bachelor of arts, Duke University; MBA, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

Yoh on motivating employees: If people can’t motivate themselves, it’s going to be very difficult for someone else to motivate them. But through the interviewing process and the initial employment phase, you can see how motivated they are. Are they showing up to work early, are they leaving late, are they asking questions, are they open to feedback and criticism? But the flip side of that is people might not have previously worked in a place where spreading the vision and strategy is key. It could be that they’re not accustomed to being in a place where they’re offered the opportunity to participate in that. So there are times when you can draw that out of people, but first and foremost, you have to start with the fire within.

Yoh on understanding the vision: You do want everyone to have that common understanding of the vision. From the first time you talk to them, you want to be very clear on what it’s like to work here, what the expectations are, so there are no surprises. But the second part is that you’re really putting a puzzle together, and everybody has to understand what their piece of the puzzle is. How what they do on a daily basis impacts the whole, whether they are a salesperson, a recruiter, a manager, in an administrative role. Letting people know where they fit in the universe is a very important way to keep them motivated.

Yoh on telling stories: People can identify with stories. From the time you are a young child, you are read stories at home, you’re telling stories around the campfire. Stories have a way of identifying and personalizing ideas, as opposed to a textbook ‘here’s how’ message. It brings it to life and gives it color. Storytelling is a very important way to get your message and vision across.