01 Dec 2012
In a wide-ranging Q&A in the "Global Manager" column of the New York Times (September 2, 2012), Sir Martin Sorrell (MBA 1968), chief executive of the WPP Group, the world's largest advertising and marketing firm, had some thoughts on personnel and the hiring process. Asked what he looked for in employees, Sorrell replied: "I think they should be smart; the word aggressive is overused, but pushy; confident but not arrogant; intelligent but not overly intellectual. You have to be able to cut through the wooliness of things and get to the point. You have to understand…that the world is going to be more and more messy. The 21st century is not for tidy minds." And when a hire doesn't work out, it's probably because "people don't think about it enough," Sorrell said. "They don't evaluate it carefully. You think longer about buying a laptop or a BlackBerry than hiring someone because you're desperate for someone to fill a gap or solve a problem."
Class of MBA 1968, Section D