Secrets to Success: Peter Harrison Gets “Down To Business”

Peter Harrison

WashingtonExec reached out to area executives to gain insight and share local “secrets to success” stories.

Meet Peter Harrison, the CEO of GlobalLogic. GlobalLogic is  a leader in software R&D services. Harrison joined GlobalLogic in 2002 when the company employed 20 people. Today, GlobalLogic employs nearly 6,000 people in 20 locations around the world. With Harrison’s leadership the company has seen tremendous growth and success. WashingtonExec talked to him about the five secrets to business success.

Peter Harrison’s Five Secrets:

1.  First find your market:  When starting a business, it’s often helpful to cast a wide net initially.  Your idea may be applicable to many needs, and only by talking to a diverse set of customers will you really understand your true target market.  However, once you find your ideal customer, narrow your focus quickly to hone your message and solution to this unique set of needs.  Resist the urge to broaden your focus until you have real traction with this initial target market.

2.  Learn faster than your competition:  From very early on in your business, and throughout the business lifecycle, remember to focus on talking with customers regularly.  The hardest part is to balance “selling” with being intellectually honest in terms of processing feedback.  Stay connected to customers and tuned into reality, and you will learn faster than your competition.

3.  The only constant is change:  It’s very easy to predict the future… it’s much harder to predict when it will happen. Timing is not everything, but it’s a huge part of success! Stay open to the multiple future scenarios your company will go through, some of which may not bring you an immediate advantage.  Always keep your options open, and you’ll be in a position to win, regardless of current timing or direction.

4.  Great execution trumps everything:  Strategy is important, but without great execution you will never really understand if your strategy is right.  Execution connects you to customers, validates your strategic thinking and provides the fuel for growth.  Think early, carefully and often about metrics, and stay relentless about using them to ensure performance and to guide your success.

5.  Build a culture of great people:  Recognize that people are your most important asset. Hire very carefully, and keep people growing.  Surround yourself with great people and they will do the same. Work to make people successful while honestly assessing performance, potential and cultural fit. Don’t be afraid to let people go. Every opening is an opportunity to add a potential star to your team and an opportunity for those leaving to find something they can be great at.

*Featured in the 11/9 edition of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority online magazine E-Bird.

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