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Share a Coke with: Matt Grill

Welcome to our Share a Coke series on the EDQ blog! We think hearing stories right from the people who make up our EDQ family gives us all a chance to recognize these individuals, their talents, and their stories. We wouldn’t be the company we are today without the people who make up our team, and they give a great view to what life at EDQ is like.

In order to make this happen, we are sitting down to Share a Coke with a featured member of the EDQ team, and sharing their story with all of you! So sit back, share a Coke with us, and let’s chat with today’s featured EDQ’er, Matt Grill, Vice President of Operations. 

1. To start out with, Matt, what is your story?

What’s my story?  I have no idea!!  I started at the very bottom in my career doing technical support. I was always very curious and tried to learn as much as I could about how people did their jobs. I was able to come up with ways for them to improve their processes and help clients, and that ended up getting me promoted.

As my career progressed, I was exposed to more experiences and continued to grow.  I became an executive about 10 years after I started, and I’ve built a career on driving efficiencies and developing employees and giving them a space to grow ever since.

I was really fortunate to have two or three individuals who were key mentors at critical stages in my career, which is why I put so much value in giving back as a mentor now.

 2. Now that we know a little bit about you, describe your time at EDQ:

It’s been a lot of fun, yet challenging, and very interesting. It’s certainly kept me engaged!

It’s been great getting to know the employees here at EDQ, learning more about them, and seeing them perform at a very high level.  The process and time frames associated with being able to drive change and continuous improvement can sometimes be challenging in a matrixed business.

But it’s been really interesting getting to learn about this business, since I didn’t come from a data quality background. I’ve gotten the chance to explore new ways we can improve things as a business and for our customers, and all of these things collectively have kept me highly engaged in my time here.

3. What is your favorite thing about EDQ?

I would say the culture.

So, at least the way I see it in my group, we have a culture where everybody values the input and performance of everyone else on the team. Everyone is willing to pitch in and help, and there is genuine concern for the business and well-being of their coworkers. 

Our overall culture is also very open to trying out ideas, regardless of where they come from, or whether or not they are within the norm. We love to test stuff out.

 4. How do you encourage your team to have ideas?

I’ve always told them that many of our best, innovative ideas will come from them, not upper management.   They are on the front lines working with clients and they are highly intelligent, capable people.  

Our definition of accountability is being able to find solutions to the problems we have and I’m very fortunate to have a team that does that.  I could go on and on about ideas both big and small that my team have come up with to solve problems. And they do this not for personal recognition, but to help their team, the business, and our customers.

This is the expectation our team has; all I do is let them know that they have the forum and ability to put their ideas into action.

5. What skills do you think make you the most successful in your role?

Wow. That’s a tough question!

I would say my decision-making process. I’ve been able to surround myself with intelligent, high aptitude people, and I like to think I’m smart enough to listen to them when their viewpoints differ from mine.  

It’s really enabled me to see potential pitfalls and uncover creative solutions.  I’m able to have a high level of confidence in my decisions because of it.  It’s also helped me course correct when needed to ensure the success of the initiative, team, and business.

6. What is your definition of leadership?

My definition of leadership is being able to inspire people to work together in order to achieve an important common goal. At the same time, it is giving those people the opportunity to take part in the success, and educate themselves so they can grow themselves as people and as professionals.

At the end of the day, as a leader, you are going to be measured based on the results, whatever your goal or target is. But it’s more difficult to measure the impact you have on your people. I think true leaders are those who have a lasting impact on those they are working with. Hopefully I’ve made a positive impact on mine.

 7. How can people be better leaders?

You have to have a consistent drive to want to make things better. 

I don’t think you can just get up one morning and think, “Today I’m really going to develop someone or come up with a great idea.”   

Whether that’s building a better product or process, or helping a peer or employee improve, or just trying to learn something new to make yourself better…it has to become part of our DNA.  And you have to care about people.  We are all shaped by our experiences and I’ve been fortunate to have great ones and be mentored by great people who have helped me to develop and coach others.  You also don’t have to be in a management role to be a leader.  Just because you are a manager doesn’t mean you are a leader.  Over my career I’ve seen just as many individual contributors display true leadership as I have managers.

 8. What is one fun fact about you?

I really haven’t changed; I’m the same person I was when I was 18, just a lot older looking!  I still like to do all the same stuff I’ve always done…go to sporting events, play video games, going out with friends, none of that has really changed, I still have the exact same interests as I did then. I feel sorry for my wife because now she’s dealing with two kids instead of just one. 

 

Thanks for sharing a Coke with us, Matt! We love having your leadership and investment in all of the employees and business goals here at EDQ! Matt’s message about always remaining curious, and that anyone can be a leader is something we can all take with us.

Matt painted a perfect picture of life here at EDQ, and all that it takes to invest in your employees. If you would like to know more about our team, office, and opportunities, 

Get to know us here!

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