Stepping Back is the First Step to Mission Accomplished with Stephanie Hill, EVP at Lockheed Martin

By Mission

A rogue, dead, spy satellite is plummeting toward Earth. At impact, it will cause devastation — a toxic spill could cover an area the size of two football fields. This satellite has to be taken out. This is not a retread Hollywood movie, with a superhero soaring in to save the day. No, this actually happened. But there was no superhero or savior from another planet to fly in and redirect the satellite. Instead, a company and its team were tasked to ensure a missile would strike the satellite’s fuel tank while the satellite was moving at 17,000 miles an hour. The satellite was the size of a school bus, and the fuel tank was the size of one seat on a bus. So how did we avoid a catastrophe?  And what company did we trust with the mission? The answer is Lockheed Martin, a company with a legacy spanning more than one hundred years which includes serving America and its allies by providing the technology required to ensure security and freedom. Stephanie C. Hill is the Executive Vice-President of Rotary and Missions Systems at Lockheed Martin. She leads more than 35,000 people who work on more than a thousand programs ranging from helicopters to integrated air and missile defense to cyber solutions and beyond. So the question is how is it possible for Stephanie and her team to have a culture of stepping back, and staying calm, even at the most tense, perilous moments like when an incoming satellite poses a huge danger? Find out on this episode of Business X factors.Main takeaways: Stepping Back to Move Forward: Pushing forward through difficulty and problems are often used as mantras for success. But as mountain climbers would attest to, it’s never a straight walk to the top. There are many twists and turns to get to the summit and sometimes the best thing to do is to step back, take stock and make changes in order to move two steps forward. Business leaders who are constantly moving and pushing forward sometimes need to step back or sideways to get a wider view of the business, listen to clients and consider changes or other paths they can follow that will lead them higher quicker or more efficiently.Diversity Unlocks Innovation: While managers generally accept that they do benefit from a diverse workforce, it can be hard to measure how a company’s ability to diversify helps the bottom line. Research by Harvard has proven that firms with two-dimensional diversity out-innovate and out-perform others and they also are 45% likelier to report a growth in market share and 70% likelier to report capturing a new market. Diversity unlocks innovation by creating an environment of “outside-the-box thinking. As a leader, you should ensure that everyone is heard, allow for an open environment to propose novel ideas, share credit for success, give feedback that can be actioned, and implement feedback from teams without bias.Ask The Dumb Question: Many companies are not set up to encourage people to ask questions, but by asking a seemingly dumb question, businesses may learn about a problem they overlooked or did not think existed. Solutions and insight often come from someone who had the guts to ask the dumb question. Avoiding asking hard questions can lead to companywide groupthink and there could be a lack of clarity and cohesion in companies and organizations.---Business X factors is produced by and brought to you by Hyland. For over a decade, Hyland has been named a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Content Services Platforms, leading the way to help people get the information they need when and where they need it. More than half of 2019 Fortune 100 companies rely on Hyland to help them create more meaningful connections with the people they serve. When your focus is on the people you serve, Hyland stands behind you. Hyland is your X factor for better performance. Go to to learn more.

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