Born: Northumberland, Pa.
First job: Delivering the Philadelphia Inquirer around the age of 11
What has been your greatest business challenge?
From the management point, coming off being the COO of the firm for 18 years until 2003 and facing the situation where the person who had been the CEO for approximately 23 years was leaving, and how to, in fact, take the firm, and take it in the direction I totally wanted to lead it in.
It was both my biggest challenge but also probably the most satisfying thing I have done in the management side of my career.
What is the greatest business lesson you’ve learned?
You have to have the ability to make the decision and not just put off decisions. Too often, a nondecision is a bad decision.
But once the decision is made, if you end up seeing it’s wrong, don’t be afraid to acknowledge that it was wrong and reverse it.
Whom do you most admire in business and why?
The CEO of one of our clients. That is Jim Rohr, who is the CEO of PNC. He is tremendously giving of his time to some important community organizations and has PNC doing a great deal in the revitalization of Pittsburgh. He’s done a tremendous job with PNC. It is very, very profitable. He has made the difficult decisions to shake that organization up.
So, it’s much easier for me to admire somebody I have seen hands-on and have actually worked with than it is to just try and read books and say, for example, Jack Welch must be the greatest thing since sliced bread because he invented Six Sigma or whatever the hell he might have done.
I take as my role model much more somebody that I personally saw and saw how they went about their job.