Judi Hand, CRO of TTEC, on Credibility, Compassion and Culture
As a child, Judi Hand could not have anticipated she would one day build an incredibly productive B2B sales machine and run a $7 billion business. But her mother paved the way for that success.
An entrepreneur at heart, Judi’s mom launched a 10-person, home-based business in the 1960s that eventually became a contact center employing 600 people. Working for her mother during summers throughout high school and college, Judi learned lessons about accountability and authenticity. “I literally and figuratively grew up under my mom’s desk.”
In addition to holding Judi to the highest standards, her mother gave her a view into what it means to be a caring leader. When a manager was experiencing serious domestic issues, Judi’s mom made it clear she was there for her. And she proved it by meeting her at the airport to support this woman as she made her escape. “That speaks volumes to the kind of person and leader my mom was. I’ve carried that lesson of compassion and caring for others throughout my career.”
I wanted credibility and understanding of marketing. I didn’t want to be a leader that just presides over the work. I wanted dirt under my fingernails. I wanted to know how the work got done.
Judi gained more wisdom about how to succeed in the professional world when she attended business school 12 years into her career at US West Communications. Feeling the need to broaden her horizons, she chose a school with people from many different cultures and industries.
The exposure opened Judi’s eyes to her US-centric view. “I used the phrase ‘rest of world’ in a strategy document and one of my classmates – a woman from India – said to me ‘Judi, with all due respect, it’s most of world.’ She made me aware of the fallacy in seeing the US as being the biggest, most important part of the world.”
After business school, Judi returned to US West, where she learned every aspect of marketing before leading the department. “I wanted credibility and understanding of marketing. I didn’t want to be a leader that just presides over the work. I wanted dirt under my fingernails. I wanted to know how the work got done.”
Next she was put in charge of new sales programs. “I ultimately ran all of sales. Having both sales and marketing in my background then set me up to be a general manager because I had an understanding of how to drive growth for business.” After running the small business and consumer division of US West, Judi left to take over the Enterprise Customer Group for AT&T. After five years there leading a $7 billion business, she became president and general manager of TTEC, where she now holds the position of Chief Revenue Officer.
“I always wanted the chance to create the kind of culture I saw my mom create in her business and I’ve gotten that chance at TTEC. We live our values here, and when we succeed, we do so together.”
Some of Judi’s other keys to success:
- Surrounding herself with experts. Judi understands she can best deliver outcomes when she calls upon individuals who are expert in different areas.
- Serving her employees. As a proponent of servant leadership, Judi lobbies for what her team needs so they can deliver on their commitments to the business.
- Respecting objective results. Judi appreciates the clear connection between sales scorecards and figuring out how to hit forecasted numbers.