People-Driven Leaders

People-Driven Leaders take a different approach to business success, helping their people be their best selves, so they can do their best work. While these leaders have common learnings and philosophies, each has a unique and compelling story to share.

Read more about the program here.

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Garry Ridge

Garry Ridge

WD-40 Company CEO

“Happiness is doing worthwhile work. In my role, this means creating an atmosphere where people can do their best and will feel good about how they’re investing their days with us.”

Terilyn Juarez Monroe

Terilyn Juarez Monroe

Chief People Officer and Senior Vice President, People & Places at Varian

"My favorite word is ‘inspiration.’ My job, my team’s job, every leader’s job is to inspire people. Starting with emotional connections, an exciting vision and a focus on creating the best possible experience for people is key."

Susan J. Schmitt

Susan J. Schmitt

Group Vice President of Human Resources, Applied Materials

“The workplace can be a wonderful laboratory for healing negative self beliefs resulting from damaged pasts. I’m not saying that HR should take on the role of therapist. But we do have an opportunity, through appropriate coaching and development programs, to offer our colleagues a path to healing through their workplace encounters and challenges.”

Jeremy Robinson

Jeremy Robinson

Vice President, Organizational Effectiveness
AdventHealth

My search for a niche was about more than just, 'How can I make an impact today?' It felt much more of, 'How am I going to leave a legacy for the organization? Where's the place where I'm going to do something that's truly going to make a difference for others?' And it's something that I feel extraordinarily passionate about."

Joan Burke

Joan Burke

Chief People Officer
DocuSign

“Each high-potential HR professional should have an organizing principle – a point of view that’s their true north toward which everything they do and stand for are pointed. It becomes part of their brand as they mature and their careers develop.”

“My favorite word is ‘inspiration.’ My job, my team’s job, every leader’s job is to inspire people. Starting with emotional connections, an exciting vision and a focus on creating the best possible experience for people is key.”

Terilyn Juarez Monroe

Chief People Officer DocuSign

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What is a People-Driven Leader?

People-driven leaders put people at the center of everything they do. 

They know that attracting, engaging, developing, and retaining happy and successful people is critical to achieve organizational success. Above all, they embrace a new way of thinking best described as People Success.

In a People Success culture, employees bring their best selves to work and do their best work. A strategy built on this foundation empowers people at all levels of an organization to pursue and support one another’s happiness, development, and performance. It’s an essential paradigm for creating high-performance organizations.

To be a people-driven leader requires compassion, emotional intelligence, and a growth mindset. These leaders also possess vision and determination to champion significant innovation and inspire others to join in.

"While these leaders have common learnings and philosophies, each has a unique and compelling story to share."

This project is an exploration of how this group of people-driven leaders developed their personal qualities and abilities. By speaking with some of the leaders we admire most — across industries, regions, and backgrounds — we’ll begin to answer the questions, How do they think? Where do they come from? And, How can future leaders adopt a people-driven mindset, and change the trajectory of their organizations?

While these leaders have common learnings and philosophies, each has a unique and compelling story to share. Follow along as we uncover what makes this unique group tick, and lay the path to shaping the next generation of people-driven leaders.