Lyft's outgoing CMO reveals the 3 qualities she looks for in all new hires
- Joy Howard is Lyft's outgoing chief marketing officer. She has previously held senior marketing roles at Coca-Cola, Sonos, and Converse.
- Speaking to Business Insider, Howard revealed the three qualities she looks for in all new hires.
- Howard says her new recruits must have a combination of personality, creativity, and data intelligence.
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Lyft's outgoing chief marketing officer, Joy Howard, has revealed the three qualities she looks for when recruiting new staff.
Howard is leaving Lyft just months after its IPO to join software security firm Dashlane in August. She has previously held senior marketing roles at companies including Coca-Cola, Sonos, and Nike, meaning she has plenty of hiring experience.
Speaking to Business Insider about brand-building and the marketing industry, Howard says her new recruits must have a combination of personality, creativity, and data intelligence.
"The first quality I look for is people who have a fire in their belly, and I think that's the most important thing," she says, regarding the most basic skill she looks for in new employees.
Beyond that, Howard wants people "who can balance left brain and right brain."
She explained: "I think one of the troublesome things that's happened in marketing is that you have this divide between people who are good at 'growth-hacking' [using analytics to boost growth] and other people who are good at brand-building but are divorced from the numbers.
AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee
"So I'm really looking for people who have integrated both, and can really think about brand and business together. If they're very creative and imaginative, I want them to show me that they can see through the numbers and how they impact the business," she added. "If they're more quantitative and analytical, then I want them to demonstrate a sense of imagination as well."
'Once you see the impact of the strategy, once everyone is aligned - it's really magical'
But even when you hire the right people, it takes time to get them invested in the strategy of the business. Getting people on board with the direction of travel can yield "magical" results, she said.
"I think the biggest business mistake I've made is misunderstanding the time and energy required to really align an organisation around a strategy," she said.
"Some people think fast and can grasp a strategy and its applications really quickly, where others need it broken down to its fundamental elements.
"Basically, a strategy is a choice backed by an organisation and reinforced by action. Some people get that really fluidly and really quickly, whereas others really need the time to kind of walk through the choice and really understand the data behind the choice.
"To [elicit] action [from employees] that has a really strong impact, you have to take the time to really ground folks in the argument behind your choice and get them rallied around it."
Ultimately, though, Howard said taking the time to ground everyone in the data is more than worth it in the end. "Problem-solving becomes so much easier when you're all grounded in that common set-up of facts and arguments. Once you see the impact of the strategy, once everyone is aligned - it's really magical," she added.