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7 Questions on Leadership with David Pearson

Name: David Pearson

Title: Principal

Organisation: Business Integrator Limited

A CFO with 30 years experience supporting commercial enterprises. My Purpose is to help people in business succeed. Success is growth in return on investment and personal value the company brings to its people and the wider world.

Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!

I hope David's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!


Jonno White

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?

The ability to connect new ideas and thoughts with those of my peers in areas that require change and improvement.

2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?

It just happened as I strove to create more value for the organisations and people I supported.

3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

In the mornings, I initiate my day by establishing a connection with God and embracing my faith to set a positive tone. Following this, I concentrate on high-energy, cerebral tasks to maximize my peak productivity. If confronted with morning traffic, I make the most of that time by engaging with inspirational content. Upon arriving at the office, my focus shifts to prioritizing activities that provide a sense of productivity. In the afternoons, I am more inclined towards open discussions and effectively managing time for interpersonal interactions, making it my preferred time for meetings.

4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?

In contemplating my recent tenure as a CFO, a position I held for 12 months before resigning in June 2023, I've come to recognize the considerable challenge of influencing individuals or teams with preconceived mindsets. Navigating through the perspectives of those whose views are deeply ingrained necessitates a level of patience and strategic finesse that may surpass my usual endurance over an extended period. As a consultant, I derive greater satisfaction and fulfillment, given the explicit engagement to instigate change or augment value, which aligns more closely with my professional preferences.

5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

One book that significantly shaped my leadership approach was a précis on the ideas and teachings of Peter Drucker. Although I've regrettably given the book away and can't recall the title, Drucker's insights left a lasting impression on me. His work is truly admirable and meaningful, serving as a profound source of inspiration.

One pivotal concept from Drucker that has deeply influenced my management philosophy is the importance of taking ample time when making decisions that impact people. Recognizing the critical role individuals play in an organization, I've internalized the notion that, when pressured to make quick decisions, it's crucial to question such urgency and articulate the need for more time. This mindset has become a cornerstone of my leadership style, fostering a thoughtful and considerate approach to decision-making in the realm of people management.

6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?

Understand your purpose and focus on delivering that. Everything else will follow.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?

Emphasizing a focus on issues rather than emotions is critical in navigating challenges. Prioritizing truth amid noise leads to optimal solutions. When confronted with tough decisions or situations, directing the team's attention to critical issues and resolving them becomes paramount. Over time, this focus becomes the cornerstone of value for individuals. It's crucial to prevent the personalization of matters and maintain objectivity for effective decision-making and resolution.

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