Image Source’s Brian Haner makes PPB Best Bosses of 2015
“Brian may be the CEO and founder of our company but he never makes you feel as if he is anything more than a fellow co-worker,” says nominator Greta Dawson, account executive, “but he’s still an influential leader and supports his team by going out of his way to help each employee with whatever they need.” Haner’s nominators describe him as approachable, caring, intelligent, inspiring, passionate, hard working, kindhearted, humble and hilarious. “Brian is genuine in all things and it shows. What you get is real,” says MaryLee Berthon, account executive. Another nominator, Jowed Hadeed, marketing coordinator, says Haner always has a great attitude. “He gives off an energy that is motivating and positive. Even as CEO, Brian stays humble.”
What is your philosophy for successfully managing people?
Haner: Find that perfect balance between creating a fun and friendly workplace, and a fiercely competitive workplace. It’s not an easy thing to do, but we’ve been the most successful when those two are in sync with each other. We want our team to have a blast when they are at work, and we also promote accountability and winning. We need to be highly competitive every day in order to bring in the right projects and clients to drive revenue.
How do you create a positive culture with your team and those who report to you?
Haner: For us, culture trumps everything, so anything we can do to build our culture is a top priority. We are big on team activities inside and outside the office. Our best team event each year is our all-company weekend getaway with everyone, including families. It’s generally a destination resort where we can leave the office setting to just hang out, build personal relationships, get to know the families and get a little crazy.
What advice can you share with other managers to improve their people management skills?
Haner: Creating autonomy with our team is extremely important, where they are really empowered to manage their business, team, clients, and departments, all with our leadership and guidance along with way. We also make sure to recognize and reward our team for success and performance. With autonomy comes trust, and when trust is present, the magic happens.