At a time when fast adoption and integration of emerging technology is considered a key to prosperity, the long-term success of any enterprise still comes down to its people, says Kenneth Braithwaite.
The former United States Secretary of the Navy was one of the keynote speakers at the London Blockchain Conference. In an interview with CoinGeek Backstage reporter Becky Liggero on the sidelines of the event, Braithwaite talked about culture and why it plays a critical role in the success of any organization.
“It all comes down to people,” according to Braithwaite, who was also a former U.S. ambassador to Norway.
“Every institution starts with people, and the leader must remember that. They must be willing to take risks,” he said, adding that when most people assume leadership positions, they become conservative and aren’t willing to take chances anymore.
“You have to be willing to lean in and trust that your people will make the right decisions. You must also be willing to own those decisions,” he noted.
Leaders must also cultivate a culture within an organization to get the best out of their people, Braithwaite added. Culture gives people the belief that they are part of something greater than self, giving them a sense of attachment, belonging and commitment.
“The most successful organizations are ones with the best culture,” he stated.
A seasoned leader, Braithwaite has held several prominent roles in the public and private sectors, including being a one-star rear admiral in the U.S. Navy. His advice for aspiring leaders: be yourself.
“Put the interests of others first,” he added.
“I have found in my life that if I look to provide opportunities for those I’m honored to lead, then everything else falls into place.”
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