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领导力

她曾经被百思买视为风险,现在当上了CEO

王波非(Phil Wahba) 2019年11月10日

科里·巴里多年来一直努力提升自己的能力,她不断承担自己舒适区之外、现有技能之外、甚至是定义模糊的领域里的工作。

科里·巴里在百思买(Best Buy)近20年的工作生涯里,曾经在早期的一次绩效评估中被视为“公司的风险点”。对评估结果感到不安的巴里决定听取他人意见,改正缺点,而不是一逃了之。

“你可以判断,有一些是很有价值的真话,有一些是我需要努力的地方。”巴里于10月23日在华盛顿举行的《财富》杂志最具影响力的商界女性峰会上向观众表示,“之后我就倾尽全力。”此后的第二次评估中,她提交了自己的个人发展计划。

这种坚持当然为巴里带来了丰厚的回报:今年6月,她被任命为价值430亿美元的零售企业百思买的CEO,44岁的她成为《财富》美国500强企业里最年轻的女性CEO。(今年9月,在华尔街的首次演讲中,她提出2025年的销售额要达到500亿美元。)

巴里在明尼苏达州的一个小镇长大,母亲是画师,父亲是皮革工人。由于总是面临下一顿饭不知从哪里来的不确定性,她希望在自己的工作生活中寻求更多的稳定。

所以她选择了会计。巴里打趣道:“我可能是地球上唯一一个因为说想当会计而让父母十分失望的人。”

在百思买,巴里多年来一直努力提升自己的能力,她不断承担自己舒适区之外、现有技能之外、甚至是定义模糊的领域里的工作。这最终帮助她不断向公司高层迈进。

2012年,百思买的CEO因为丑闻下台,公司也因为亚马逊在电子类消费品市场的实力感受到巨大压力,百思买濒临死亡,但巴里再次决定坚持到底,而不是一逃了之。

她最终成了她的前任、执行主席休伯特·乔利的麾下主将,同时也是百思买以惊人姿态回归的主要架构师:百思买回归的两大助力包括拥抱和亚马逊的竞价,以及在门店内为大客户电子品牌提供足够空间进行硬件展示和操作教学。

她回忆道:“如果你是管理者,在状况不佳的时候离开是最大的罪过。”

巴里说,就在五年前,当上CEO对她来说甚至连个遥远的梦想都算不上。但随着这种可能性潜入脑海,巴里开始积攒她认为可能用得上的技能。

“我想要成为CEO。我努力学习掌握我认为可以让我做好准备的技能。”巴里说,“我不认为谁真的会等着最后有人看着你的眼睛说:‘你会成为一家市值430亿美元公司的CEO。’”

现在,她成为了百思买的CEO,致力于继续推动百思买的增长,在医疗保健和如何帮助老年人延长居家时间等方面下了重注。她说,目前她还是个新手,因此听取了同事和圈内人对自己工作表现的大量评论。

“人们问我当CEO最惊奇的事是什么?对我来说,是你能够得到大量的反馈,而且你可以从很多不同的地方得到这些反馈。”她开玩笑说。同时,巴里也补充道,这些反馈将帮助她更好地完成工作。(财富中文网)

译者:Agatha

Early on in her nearly 20-year career at Best Buy, Corie Barry was deemed a “risk to the organization” in a performance review. Unnerved by the assessment, Barry decided to work on what she was told were her shortcomings, rather than bolt.

“You can decide somewhere here there is a nugget of truth, somewhere in here there are things I need to work on,” Barry told the audience at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women summit on October 23 in Washington, D.C. “I buckled down.” And at the next assessment, she brought her own development plan.

The perseverance has of course paid off handsomely for Barry: she was named CEO of Best Buy, a $43 billion, retailer in June, and at 44, became the youngest female CEO in the Fortune 500. (Last month, in her first presentation to Wall Street, she laid out her plan for getting to $50 billion in sales by 2025.)

Barry grew up in small town Minnesota, raised by a painter mother and a leather worker father. But the uncertainty surrounding where the next meal would come from led her to seek more structure in her own work life.

So she gravitated toward accounting. “I’m probably the only person on earth whose parents were really disappointed when I said I wanted to go be an accountant,” Barry quipped.

At Best Buy, Barry sought to build her capabilities over the years by taking on jobs outside her comfort zone or existing skills set, or even those that were ill defined. That ultimately helped her climb the ranks at Best Buy.

After Best Buy’s near death experience in 2012—when it lost its then-CEO to scandal, and sales were under enormous pressure from Amazon.com muscling in on its consumer electronics market—Barry again decided to stick it out, rather than flee.

She eventually became a chief lieutenant to her predecessor, executive chairman Hubert Joly, and was a key architect of Best Buy’s stunning comeback—one that was fueled by embracing price matching with Amazon and creating spaces in its stores for major consumer electronics brands to showcase their wares and teach customers how to use them.

“If your purpose is stewardship, and leaving when things are bad is the ultimate crime,” she recalled.

As recently as five years ago, becoming CEO was not even a remote idea for her, Barry said. But as the possibility starting creeping into her mind, Barry said she set about gathering the skills she thought would be needed.

“I wanted the CEO job. I worked hard to acquire to get the skills that I thought would get me ready for it,” Barry said. “I don’t think anyone, at the end of the day, really expects someone to look you in the eye, and say ‘You’re going to be the CEO of a $43 billion company.’”

Now that she is CEO, Barry is working to continue Best Buy’s growth, betting heavily on health care and how, for instance, tech can help seniors stay in their homes longer. For now, as a rookie CEO, she says, Barry is taking in a lot of commentary from colleagues and her circle about how she’s doing.

“When people ask me what’s the biggest surprise about being CEO? For me, it’s been the amount of feedback you get and how many places you get it,” she joked. At the same time, Barry added, that will help her do her job even better.

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