Dear Don, Thank you you for your warm welcome to the group. I’ve been fortunate to have spent my early career in scientific research within US Government. While it was my pleasure to venture out into the private sector, I am thrilled to be back working in the federal government. I feel a great deal of personal satisfaction as a public servant.
While in the private sector in 2001, I was an early hire at start-up biopharmaceutical company in Cambridge, MA. The hiring manager, my supervisor, was Paul Ponath; he was the Vice President of Research and Development. In building his division, Paul centered his efforts on piecing together the necessary talent. It was clear to all of us that his intentions were pure – to build the strongest team – while keeping in mind both scientific talent as well as personal chemistry/integrity. Paul had a deep understanding of both the science and the business of science. At a tremendous depth, he understood what was needed to achieve success.
With the group that he assembled, he trusted all of us as leaders to uphold our responsibility as team members. He honored our achievements. Within our team, he instilled the principle that each one of us was the “most important person in the company”. This lesson has stuck with me as I grew my team within this organization. It remains with me now; in an efficient and effective organization, a leader needs to clearly understand the mission and treat every team member as vital to bringing about overall success.
Though this example is centered in the private sector, it is certainly applicable to organizations within the public sector: pure intentions for success, clear commitment to achieving success, and respect & trust in your team members to carry out the group’s mission.