Rated among the 50 most inspirational people in the world, holding a place on The Apprentice Board and voted as business woman of the year, Baroness Karren Brady of Knightsbridge CBE, is a woman you can’t help but sit up and pay attention to.
During Cornerstone’s Convergence 2017 event, Brady took to the centre stage to discuss a problem affecting departments across the world - what does it take to get the most out of your people, and your own careers?
The business magnate and CEO of West Ham United Football Club - a London Premier League club with a current value of £800,000,000 - believes that “if you have a career you love, it enriches your life.” However, this goes hand in hand with the right culture, which she says, is the hardest, yet most important thing to change.
Brady explains that the best leaders create a culture where people are listened to, are encouraged and have meaningful work, asking: “who wants to work somewhere where no one feels good or knows what they stand for?” She says that the most successful businesses, are those that embed an entrepreneurial spirit, which is why she ensures every employee rotates throughout different departments, so, in turn, they can offer ideas on how it can be improved. And empowering and creating an environment where staff aren’t afraid to contribute is clearly paying off, adding that last year, the annual average sick leave rate was just one day and one-quarter.
But how did she turn West Ham into one of the five fastest-growing brands in world football? Brady says there are six ingredients to having a successful career. They have been listed below.
- Leadership: A real leader faces the music, and a true test of their abilities is how they handle what they don’t know.
- Ambition: Identifying what drives you can encourage you to focus.
- Determination: How do you deal with defeat?
- Attitude: Brady advises, “if you don’t like something, change it.” But if you can’t change something, change your attitude. Ask yourself, what’s the worst thing that could happen before you make decisions.
- Direction: You need to create a culture where your staff see the amount of care you put in the business.
- Positivity: When everything seems to be falling apart, those who stay successful are the ones that press on.
To see a collection of the highlights from Cornerstone's Convergence event, click next...