Upward Move: Michael A. Griffith

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Upward Move: Michael A. Griffith
Upward Move: Michael A. Griffith

Michael A. Griffith
Executive vice president, inVentiv Health

FROM HELPING entrepreneurs take their company public to uniting pharma services companies with drugmakers, the majority of Michael Griffith's career has been about bringing people together for a common interest. Now, as the newly named executive vice president of inVentiv, he hopes to leverage that earned wisdom as he focuses on his new goal: to “operationalize the vision that is inVentiv.”

And with over $1 billion in revenue and 5,000 people under his purview, making it all come together will be no small task.

“I didn't come up through advertising or public relations agencies,” Griffith says, “but I have put together high-performance sales organizations—ones that do more than knock on doors. They organize and leverage their offerings in a way that's interesting and easy to understand.”

And Griffith hopes to extend that line of thinking to his new position. “I'd like to see the ­com­pany growing at a higher rate, doing more work, a broader set of projects for existing ­clients, so I'm at looking at delivering concepts that will allow us to compete better and win more in the market.”

He hopes to do that by instilling a culture, where people “can say what they think,” Griffith explains. “That's really important, having people around who are willing to challenge you. A lot of that comes from culture—the idea that people's views are valued.”

To bring together a cast of honest opinions, he says he looks “to hire people who have been in service jobs before—I want a salesman, I want someone who can interact with people around them in a positive way. That's who I look for in managers.”

“Mindset and energy level are so important as well as being true to yourself,” he adds. “I tell people: ‘speak plainly and tell the truth.' That's going to get you a long way and make every team you're on better.”

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