Anthony Gruppo is an International CEO of Marsh, American author of seven books, poet, and podcast host. Anthony has faced first-hand the many challenges of accomplishing achievement in life. In the rural towns of Pennsylvania, amidst the boundless pace and energy of NYC, the breadth and scope of Texas, the eclectic California lifestyle, the diversity of Southeast Florida, and the cultural wonder of the United Kingdom. He is known for his ability as a turnaround specialist, motivational speaker, and industry leader.
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Table of Contents
Let’s start with a brief introduction first. Introduce yourself to our readers.
Anthony Gruppo: I came from a small Pa town where as a young man I was a construction worker. My presentations share how I journeyed from a laborer to an International CEO. I challenge others to think in a new and powerful way as a servant leader. My writings are a roadmap to personal and professional success.
Our audience is interested to know about how you got started in the first place. Did you always want to become a CEO or was it something you were led to? Our readers would love to know your story!
Anthony Gruppo: I never chased a title. I chased the difficult challenges and discovered in doing so the titles chased me. My career after working on construction was in sales and has always been the foundation of my if skill set. I see everyone as a CEO. Can they coach themselves and others, have an entrepreneurial spirit, and act like an owner.
“Selfmade” is a myth. We all received help, no doubt you love to show appreciation to those who supported you when the going got tough, who has been your most important professional inspiration?
Anthony Gruppo: Dave Eslick the CEO of Marsh McLennan Agency who trusted me to serve as his organizational development professional and sent me to turn some of the most challenging industry operations and companies.
How did your journey lead you to become a CEO? What difficulties did you face along the way and what did you learn from them?
Anthony Gruppo: Having come from humble beginnings I knew the value of trusting others. How to make tough decisions impacting many colleagues. I had to adapt to new locations, understand the cultural differences, fight for a diverse and inclusive collegial foundation long before it was a daily buzz. I put myself through school while working. I had to lead those who were stuck in their ways and remove those if treated others unfairly. All by maintaining the spirit and drive of a Servant Leader, who is focused on others and not himself
Tell us about your company. What does your business do and what are your responsibilities as a CEO?
Anthony Gruppo: Marsh Commercial has over 280,000 clients and over 2,000 colleagues with 45 locations in the United Kingdom. We are part of the Marsh organization throughout the globe.
What does CEO stand for? Beyond the dictionary definition, how would you define it?
Anthony Gruppo: CEO to me stands for Coach Entrepreneur and Owner. Can you coach yourself and others? Think like an entrepreneur and act like an owner.
When you first became a CEO, how was it different from what you expected? What surprised you?
Anthony Gruppo: The daily surprises which come with leading thousands. The need for decisiveness is critical with clear direct and frequent communication. How your every word and action is watched with intent focus by colleagues and constituents.
There are many schools of thought as to what a CEO’s core roles and responsibilities are. Based on your experience, what are the main things a CEO should focus on? Explain and please share examples or stories to illustrate your vision.
Anthony Gruppo: Direct communication and the care of colleagues. During the pandemic, I installed a separate phone line in my residence in London for colleagues to call in the evenings and on weekends. They could call about anything and that one simply offering made people feel safe and valued. Before becoming the CEO of MMA in the Northeast I called each colleague over 300 and introduced myself, and how I would work for them. The CEO’s responsibility? It is to serve the people. It is as simple or as difficult as that.
Share with us one of the most difficult decisions you had to make for your company that benefited your employees or customers. What made this decision so difficult and what were the positive impacts?
Anthony Gruppo: Have to close unproductive locations in the U.K.and make people redundant. It helped to turn the company to success but everyday since I think of those who lost their jobs.
How would you define success? Does it mean generating a certain amount of wealth, gaining a certain level of popularity, or helping a certain number of people?
Anthony Gruppo: Success will be determined by how others speak of you, not by your measure. If others seek to duplicate what you led and started then you were a success. Were others better for having met you?
Some leadership skills are innate while others can be learned. What leadership skills do you possess innately and what skills have you cultivated over the years as a CEO?
Anthony Gruppo: I would say:
- -Direct communication
- -Creating a diverse group who have diverse thoughts.
- -Never impressed with myself.
- -Start each day at zero
- -Be a force of one serve a force of many.
- -Don’t micromanage
How did your role as a CEO help your business overcome challenges caused by the pandemic? Explain with practical examples.
Anthony Gruppo: I led a large company in the Uk which was failing financially when I took over to one which is now incredibly successful. The major turn was done during the pandemic all while working remotely.
Do you have any advice for aspiring CEOs and future leaders? What advice would you give a CEO that is just starting on their journey?
Anthony Gruppo: In a nutshell:
- -You do not have as much time as you think.
- -You are more ready than you think.
- -Don’t take yourself too seriously
- -Care about those you lead and their families.
- -Don’t talk about your work problems at home.
- -Love life and see each day as an adventure.
Thank you for sharing some of your knowledge with our readers! They would also like to know, what is one skill that you’ve always wanted to acquire but never really could?
Anthony Gruppo: Speak multiple languages.
Before we finish things off, we have one final question for you. If you wrote a book about your life today, what would the title be?
Anthony Gruppo: I have written a few books and the title of my first I believe best answers the question:
Creating Reality – A Guide to Personal Accomplishment
Mike Weiss, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Anthony Gruppo for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Anthony Gruppo or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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