International Men's Day 2020: Interview with Mike Bott
Posted by Lewis Cornwall on 19/11/2020
This year for International Men’s Day we conducted a series of interviews with some of the male leaders within LHi Group. First up was our recently promoted Group Managing Director, Mike Bott.
1. What has your journey as a leader been like at LHi?
Where to start, 13 years into the business, and I can honestly say I have grown up with the company. From graduate to Group MD, and all the levels in between, it’s been a wild ride to date. So much learning, many wins, many failures, but always looking to improve myself and the teams I manage to move forward into a better position. As I have matured, my ability to understand different perspectives has helped me hire and run diverse teams, building strong culture within offices and regions. Some things have stayed the same, my passion for the job, more now than ever, and my work ethic has not waivered setting a high standard for others to follow. My strength is attention to detail and consistent standards, but with age/kids/experiences, my empathy has increased to support this, maybe not so night and day as it once was!
2. As a role model in the group now, what advice would you give to your younger you?
There are many things I would tell myself, but a few stand out. Number one would be to look to those around you with greater skills than yourself to highlight and overcome your weaknesses, learn, and implement what they do to make them great at certain tasks. My second would be to ask the extra question, be as inquisitive as possible, and take the time to listen to what is being said. My last would be to ask for feedback as much as possible, its ok to be vulnerable, this is something that as I have got older, I have certainly been more comfortable doing. I will be trying to instill this into my two boys, Seb and Finn. The importance of asking for help, not trying to take it all on yourself and that it is okay not to get it right the first time around.
3. How do you think the culture has changed at LHi to improve health and wellbeing?
Our culture for me is our biggest selling point, but health and wellbeing for many years were not at the heart of this. Safe to say that we took any frustrations that we had in the day, into the pub. Monday – Friday, I built a lot of great relationships around the pubs of London – and it was great. However, as we have grown, we have found other, far more productive, and healthy ways to create a great culture and I am very pleased to say that’s it become a key driver for our success. The fact we talk about the importance of health and well-being, both physical and mental so often, shows and demonstrates how important it is to all of us in the business. It’s not just talk, we have actioned so much, especially this year when it’s never been more important with fewer opportunities to ‘catch up in the pub’. My team in Austin have all taken up Golf, groups have been out kayaking and going for walks, finding other ways to develop our culture that is healthy for our mental and physical health. I am incredibly proud that we as a business are so open, comfortable discussing and acting upon new ways to improve our health and wellbeing, and long may that continue.