A New Beginning
I announced earlier this week that I have joined Aviva plc as Executive Vice President and Technology Shared Services Director. In this role, I will drive the advancement of a key component in the Group IT strategy: the creation of a global shared services provider for IT infrastructure. The newly created Technology Shared Services (TSS) organization will be focused on continuing to improve Aviva technology services, reduce costs, and enhance capabilities.
New beginnings can be nerve wrecking. You spend years building a team, finding the people you can trust to get things done and do so in a values based manner. You drive strategy and create value for shareholders. And you check off so many boxes, proudly getting to a point where you can finally rest and look at the great things you and the team created …. and then you move on to the next challenge.
YIKES!! So much for resting.
“Success is simple. Do what’s right, the right way, at the right time” Arnold H. Glasgow
If I’m honest with myself, I will admit that I will likely never get to truly resting until retirement (target TBD). The fact is, I love gnarly, complex, global challenges and am thankful I have found that in my new role at Aviva.
Aviva is a solid company that has similar values as mine. The culture is one of long-term focused strategy, a commitment to doing the right thing for employees and clients, and a devotion to giving back and enhancing the communities in which we live, work, and conduct business. And while there is MUCH work to be done, the amazing team in place has already begun to build a platform for growth and change that will enable more success to come.
Leaders at All Levels
I am incredibly excited about this new adventure and will enjoy getting to meet the new teams around the world. One concept I have constantly addressed that I expect will be highly relevant here is the fact that everyone in today’s technology organizations must be leaders. From time to time, everyone will be called on to make decisions, act independantly, and respond to crises without time to go up the chain for days.
You can’t always wait for the guys at the top. Every manager at every level in the organization has an opportunity, big or small, to do something. Every manager’s got some sphere of autonomy. Don’t pass the buck up the line. Bob Anderson
I blogged about this a while back with “Leaders at All Levels”
Moving to London
I LOVE Chicago, the place I have called home for so many years. And I love having the opportunity to give back to the community in which I love. But it is definietly time for a new adventure, the opportunity to more deeply explore another great city, London, and to work with colleagues in other European cities. While this role requires that I move to London for a while, I am confident that the relationships I have built in Chicago will continue. And, of course, I hope to see many of my friends and family in London throughout the year. Visit!!
As Marilyn Monroe said, “A career is wonderful, but you can’t curl up with it on a cold night.” So I expect my friends to trek on over to see me from time to time, share a lager or a cup of coffee, and warm my heart with their presence!
Two great quotes come to mind as I contemplate the week ahead and my new adventure:
“If your work is becoming uninteresting, so are you. Work is an inanimate thing and can be made lively and interesting only by injecting yourself into it. Your job is only as big as you are.” George C. Hubbs
“You can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do.” Henry Ford
I’ve enjoyed my rest, the time to reflect on the good and back aspects of my prior leadership role, and the opportunity to give back via non-profit and civic consulting. But it’s time to go back to corporate, tackle this new and exciting challenge, and meet a new batch of great people with whom I hope to build something great.
Be Well. Lead On.
Adam L. Stanley | ALSWharton Connections
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