Edwin Bosso is the Founder of Myrtle Group. Edwin Bosso is a thought leader, influencer, visionary, and successful entrepreneur. Edwin provides the leadership and energy that has inspired the creation of Myrtle Group. Edwin Bosso joins other leading CEOs and Founders taking part in our Leader Roundtable Interview Series. The DotCom Magazine editorial team has recently awarded Myrtle Group our Impact Company of 2019 award, and we are delighted to have Edwin join us for our Leader Round Table Interview.
The Myrtle Group story is very interesting, and we are very excited to not only interview Edwin about his very successful business and entrepreneurial spirit, but also put Edwin through our popular speed round as well. Edwin, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day for this interview, and answering some questions about leadership, your vision, and your passion.
1. What’s the “elevator pitch” for Myrtle Group?
Myrtle Consulting Group drives operational transformation within manufacturing, processing and distribution organizations. Using a practical, needs-based approach, we incorporate our values, methodologies, and technologies into custom solutions toward your specific challenges that improve operational performance and generate lasting business transformation.
2. Many of our readers are just starting to build a company. What advice can you give CEO’s just starting out regarding keeping a company moving forward, and please tell us the key to your company’s success?
I think the main thing is to not worry too much about having an overly clear vision of where you are going to land, but understanding that you have an opportunity to shape where you land on a day to day basis. It is quite intimidating to think through or visualize everything upfront. Instead, I believe it is crucial to have a high-level objective with some key principles and work as hard as we can within these visions and principles, and then build realistic milestones towards the goal. Each milestone is an opportunity to evaluate and redirect. I think that is the way to do it. Otherwise, you can never get started.
I think part of why Myrtle is successful is because we have built a business focused on values and key principles, and we do everything we can to ensure that we are there for our clients. There is also another important trait in a business like ours, and that is figuring out whether you want to focus on growing what you have into the business that you want or whether you choose safety and be overly prudent. I think the two can be mutually exclusive. We are where we are because we have built a business on values and principles and take risks while keeping our eyes on high-level objectives.
3. For other entrepreneurs seeking to build a business as successful as yours, what advice can you give them when times get a little challenging?
When times get challenging, I recommend remembering where you started from and why you are doing what you do. There will be a lot of lonely days and a lot of days where people around you and the rest of the organization will doubt and look to you for reassurance. Your responsibility as an entrepreneur is to always have a clear vision of where you are going. Life gets hard; that is just part of the game. Everybody else can doubt but not you. Everybody can be afraid but not you. You have to keep your eyes on your purpose and maintain focus to solve problems as opposed to panicking and getting disorganized or reckless. As per my earlier point, it is very difficult to see everything upfront and to figure out everything at the start. You must understand that every day is a challenge, and then work at it every day.
4. How important is the commitment to client satisfaction at Myrtle Group, and how do you make sure your customers will become raving fans of your company?
A commitment to client satisfaction is paramount and is foundational in everything we do. We would be nowhere near where we are without the support of our clients. Our commitment to quality and the work that we do for them has resulted in many clients staying with us for several years. We still have some of the clients that we started with. They keep coming back with new challenges and promptly provide us with references when needed. Delivering quality work and taking good care of our clients is inherent within our core values. You must understand the difference between customers that are satisfied and ones that are delighted. If as a consultant, as a business owner, you put a lot of effort to go above and beyond helping a client, then they will advocate for you and support you. They will be your cheerleaders. In our experience, going above and beyond is how to evolve customers into advocates.
5. What is the one thing Myrtle group does to have great communication with their customers?
The foundation for our successful customer communication is within our engagement level. Regardless of whether we are looking into possible projects with a client, performing a deep assessment, or wrapping up a project, alignment with the is absolutely necessary. Assuring the proper details of the information passing back and forth makes the difference between whether our customers succeed in their business or not. If our customers do not succeed, then we do not succeed. Engaging the client at all levels of their organization and confirming the data at all stages ensures proper communications from start to finish.
6. In today’s fast changing business environment, what do you do to keep up with the changes? What do you read to stay abreast of things?
It is a world of fast-moving change, but many things remain constant. I have been in this business for a long time, and one of the things that is constant is that clients will always have challenges, although the nature of their challenges may change. For a firm like ours that help overcome challenges, the nature of the work itself does not change much. What we actively need to do is to keep ourselves updated with latest trends and technologies that may be relevant to our client’s specific needs. This ensures we remain most effective in the projects that we do. I have operated in environments of growth and recession, where industries were expanding or consolidating, and in environments with high trends of head-count reduction or challenges with recruiting. The problems change, but the support need for leading businesses, improving businesses and transforming businesses do not change. It is the nature of the equation that changes. Our commitment is to understand our client’s challenges and work side by side to overcome them.
7. What is your “why”? Why do you get up in the morning, and how do you keep yourself at peak performance to lead Myrtle Group?
Why I get up every morning now is the same as why I started Myrtle: a belief that there is a real purpose for what we do and a real purpose for consulting. I believe that good quality consulting is a calling, a mission, a dedication to our employees at Myrtle, and a drive to do the absolute best for them. Still, there is also that stubborn belief that I can build the best consulting firm in the world. That gets me up in the morning, and I hope that it is going to be there forever.
8. Can You recommend a book that has had an influence in your career? How did it influence you?
A book that I recommend is the one that I am currently writing. Even though it is not yet complete, it continues to influence me. I think so because it has given me the opportunity to crystallize the thoughts and beliefs that I have generated and built upon over the years. It is an important moment for me to pause and reflect on how clients approach things and how I approach solving client problems. Hopefully, we will be able to finish it this year. So, be on the lookout for ‘6000 dreams’, published by Forbes Books, coming to the bookstores near you in early 2020.
9. When communicating with your staff, can you tell us the most important thing you do so that they are able to carry out the objectives that you set forth at Myrtle Group?
The most important thing to carry out our objectives is to figure out a way to articulate specific steps that others can internalize and execute. One of the key things in being a successful business leader is getting to a point where you do not have to tell people what to do anymore. Instead, you can set visions and expectations in ways that will allow people to express their own talents. If you are not able to do that, you are a task-master. I think for me in every communication and interactions with the people I work closest with, I try to inspire them to express their own talent because that is where you get the exponential power of leadership. I try to stick to the headlines and express them with enough passion. I then make myself available when people need my help and support. Even when I believe I know how to do something, I pause and let others try. I have seen over the years that people are much better than I will ever be at certain things. I think this synergy and variety of expertise helps make the Myrtle Group what it is.
10. In one sentence, can you give some advice to fellow entrepreneurs wishing to build a company as exciting as Myrtle Group?
I am not sure which advice to give in just one sentence. Every company out there, every entrepreneurial endeavor out there is raising a challenge. There is no script for it. There is no recipe for it. There are smart people that write books about it, but in reality, it is about being passionate about what you are trying to accomplish and knowing in your heart that it serves a purpose. If you are building a business based on what you want to do you, then you will most likely fail. But if you build a business based on knowing what your customers will want, then you are setting yourself up for success. The rest is just passion and dedication to what you are trying to accomplish. If you dream big and have the belief from the start, then you will build a successful business. Take risks and surround yourself with people that can make you better.
We would like to have some fun and do a “First Reaction” round with you! We will ask you ten more questions that we want you to answer in just one to three words only.
Here you go!
1. In three words or less, what makes a successful CEO?
Stubborn, patient and driven.
2. Describe your business in one word?
3. Describe your customers in one word?
4. What one attribute do you look for someone when hiring an employee?
5. What is the one word you want your customers to say about your company?
6. In three words or less, describe your passion?
Understanding and leading.
7. In three words or less, describe what it takes to be successful?
Hard-work and belief.
8. In three words or less, describe your first year in business at Myrtle Group?
Dreaming, working and daring.
9. In three words or less, describe how running a successful company has changed you?
It hasn’t changed me. Bob Marley said, “I am not famous to myself.” I am still who I am, and I will always be who I am, and that’s part of what I think is important to me. My best friend is still the janitor of the building. I try my best not to take myself too seriously. It will change your life maybe materially because you have things you can afford, but as a human being, it is very important to stay grounded to things that really matter in life. The day that changes, the whole value system is affected, and I work hard for that not to happen. Be yourself and always be prepared for a joke, and not take yourself too seriously. This is not the most important thing in life.
10. What is the one word that you believe has the most power in the English Language?
Love – that is ahead of everything else.
Edwin Bosso, Thank you so much for sitting down with us at our DotCom Magazine Leader Round Table. We very much appreciate the time you spent helping others learn more about what it takes to be a leader. We hope your interview helps our readers, and we wish you, your family, and of course Myrtle Group, nothing but the best.