John Hynes serves as CEO of Applied Insight, and is a Pinnacle Awards finalist in the National Security/DHS Industry Executive of the Year category. Here, he shares proud career moments, advice for aspiring leaders, a turning point in his career and more.
Looking back at your career, what are you most proud of?
For me, the most rewarding aspects of my career have involved mentoring people to help them realize their potential. I find it incredibly satisfying to coach people who want to engage honestly with their strengths and shortcomings in equal measure, and I love seeing them taking on new challenges and going on to achieve great success. I’ve found it a privilege to witness just how dedicated they are to becoming better leaders.
What’s your best advice for aspiring leaders who want to follow in your footsteps?
Whatever your role, look for ways to contribute beyond your responsibilities. Lean in and take an interest in what others are doing. Be constructive and become an enabler of other people’s success. Try new things. Be attentive and ask lots of questions. Always try to have an answer to the problems you pose, and be open-minded about the ideas of others. Listen and learn every day and apply what you’ve learned.
What are you most proud of having been a part of in your current organization?
At Applied Insight, we’ve created a fast-growing technology company that is solving major problems for the national security community. We’ve placed a lot of emphasis on developing a culture of pragmatic innovation, using our experience of working closely with customers to advance their mission in new ways.
A great example of that in action is Altitude, our award-winning technology that’s enabling government agencies to adopt cloud at scale. It’s a genuinely ground-breaking innovation of which we’re all very proud. It’s having a real impact on helping our customers maintain strategic advantage.
What was a turning point or inflection point in your career?
It is hard to pick one thing, but I’d go all the way back to my decision as a high school senior to attend the U.S. Naval Academy. At the time, I viewed it as a challenge to get in and then graduate. I had no sense then of how it would shape the rest of my professional career and life. I continue to draw on that experience today.