Esteban - Country Manager
Esteban thrives in a target-driven company culture that fosters trust and independence, achieving Country Manager position in just over a year. Read his story.schedule6 minute read
Esteban thrives in a target-driven company culture where he is trusted to make the best decisions
Imagine the feeling when you reach your goals, and you feel like you’re on top of the world. That was the feeling Esteban Flores was looking for in 2020, when he was searching for a company that would share his target-driven attitude and also support his career aspirations.
Esteban decided to join LeadDesk and is now Country Manager of the Spanish and Portuguese markets. He has adapted naturally to our target-driven and growth-oriented culture, and as well as managing country markets he also leads a team of nine people.
What does target-driven culture mean to Esteban? What does it look like in his everyday life? How does he lead his team in a target-driven way?
Our company culture is based on trust and independence
At LeadDesk we aim to be the leaders of the call center industry in the European market. To achieve this ambitious goal, we rely on people such as Esteban, who share our vision and are motivated to work in our target-driven culture.
“Target-driven culture means that we always aim to reach the next level in everything we do.”
“Target-driven culture means that we always aim to reach the next level in everything we do”, Esteban answers without hesitation when he is asked what our target-driven culture means to him. “And it applies to bigger things, such as growing our revenue, but also to the smaller things such as nailing the client appointment”, he continues.
To be able to maintain this kind of company culture requires that two things are at its core: trust and independence.
The level of trust and independence came as a surprise to Esteban when he joined LeadDesk. He had been working in bigger and more hierarchical companies and was therefore used to following strict guidelines.
“Here things are quite the opposite. In the beginning, I was confused that there wasn’t that much pressure from the company on how I should do my job. They trusted me that I know what I am doing. Now I get to take responsibility, be independent, and truly impact my career”, Esteban laughs.
Esteban started his career at LeadDesk working with sales, so his results were the indicator of how he was performing. “If the results were good, I was told to just keep doing a good job. I didn’t need to ask for reassurance for my actions”, he explains.
Esteban thinks that this mentality probably comes from our company’s Finnish DNA. Trust and independence are natural in Finnish culture. According to Esteban, this means he gets the training, tools, and support he needs to thrive, and then LeadDesk trusts him fully to deliver the results.
“Our culture is built in a way that encourages you to be independent and take responsibility for your actions.”
“Our culture is built in a way that encourages you to be independent and take responsibility for your actions. It requires initiative actions: you need to find the resources and information needed and get to decide how to execute your job”, Esteban sums up.
Trust is a two-way street, which means that all the employees can trust that the company has their back in challenging situations. “There has never been a time I felt left alone with my worries. I have gotten support directly from our CEO, which is an example of the low hierarchy we have here”, Esteban says.
Target-driven attitude propelled Esteban to the position of Country Manager in just over a year
His target-driven attitude has taken Esteban a long way. He joined LeadDesk as an Account Manager in 2020. In the first months, he brought in many clients and closed one of the company’s biggest deals. And all this during Covid and while growing a new market in Spain.
Esteban’s sales talents were undeniable, and he was soon asked to become a team leader. “It was a big accomplishment for me. I made a compromise to stop earning the commissions from sales and started coaching the newcomers to become B2B sales superstars”, he explains.
“Coaching and seeing my team thrive is motivating and rewarding. As we are a group with a common goal, all our wins are common, so I get to share their success.”
This decision made Esteban’s work even more meaningful. “Coaching and seeing my team thrive is motivating and rewarding. As we are a group with a common goal, all our wins are common, so I get to share their success”, he says and smiles.
In May 2021, just a bit over a year after joining LeadDesk, Esteban took on an even bigger challenge: he got promoted to Country Manager of the Spanish and Portuguese markets.
“I felt really lucky to get promoted. Opportunities to move up this quickly within a company don’t happen very often. You could say I was in the right place at the right time”, Esteban says.
What does it take to succeed as a leader in a target-driven culture?
Being a country manager and growing a new market means Esteban needs to be open to learning all the time and to adapt to changing situations.
Here are Esteban’s top 3 leadership principles to thrive in a target-driven culture:
#1 Repeat the goal and make sure everyone understands
When you are growing a market and trying to take over the industry, target-setting is always in the picture.
To reach the target, everyone in the company needs to be on the same page, understand the goals and believe in our mission.
“To me, it means constantly repeating to my team where we want to be and thinking and talking about how we should do it. And this applies to everyone at LeadDesk – from the CEO to the newest employees”, Esteban says.
#2 Believe in your team and offer them support
Esteban emphasises that his main task is to believe in his team all the time, and to offer them the support they need to succeed.
“I need to be aware of what they can do and anticipate when they need more support. I aim to give them the opportunity to make their own decisions while having full support in the background”, he explains.
When coaching and mentoring the young talents, Esteban says the most important thing is to always let the person be themselves. “I can only teach them the basics and the best practices, but everyone needs to put their own essence into their ways of doing the work. They will thrive when they let their personality shine”, he sums.
#3 Analyse your daily actions and learn by doing
You could not tell that Esteban is in his first leadership position in his career. He constantly reminds his team of the importance of always looking to learn something new.
“I think part of leadership is understanding the effects of daily decisions and analysing them in a critical way. I am always aware of my actions and consequences and try to learn from all my decisions”, he says.
And with analysing, comes learning. According to Esteban, the best way to learn is to be brave and learn by doing. “We are a company that wants to keep going. With big steps or baby steps – the most important thing is to just take the next step”, he cheerfully concludes.