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Earlier this summer I had a chance to interview Bonin Bough and couldn’t be happier to share his story as our first episode of our newest season of this podcast.

A little bit about Bonin Bough…

Bonin is a man of many titles, he’s the Host of LeBron James’ TV Show on CNBC, Cleveland Hustle, Author of Txt Me: Your Phone Has Changed Your Life. Let’s Talk about It and — in partnership with Michael Loeb (Co-Founder of Priceline.com) — has become a leading seed-stage investor in Messaging startups.

Prior to all of this, Bonin was the Chief Media & eCommerce Officer (a Title and role he created for himself) at Mondelez where he led global media buying for the $25 Billion + organization.

For someone with so many responsibilities, he’s surprisingly accessible.

You can text him any time at 646-759-1837.

Give it a shot. It might just take a little while for him to reply.

Some of my key takeaways of our interview included:

On Career Management

Bonin optimized each step of his career for Title and Span of Control. The money simply followed.

Title was incredibly important as it gave Bonin additional weight and influence in the organization. A senior title became a stepping stone to even bigger opportunities at new companies.

For example, because he was a Senior Director at Pepsi, he was recruited as a VP by Kraft and was given control of the organizations entire media buying organization.

Later, Bonin leveraged this VP title into a C-Suite title he created himself at Mondelez, creating his own seat at the table as the Chief Media & eCommerce Officer at Mondelez.

With a senior title came a larger span of control, which was particularly important for two reasons:

  1. The CEO has the largest span of control of an organization. If you aspire for that title one day, having a large span of control will give you the required experienced in building a team and trusting others to eventually one day meet the requirements of being a great CEO.
  2. When you have a large span of control, you inherently have the ability to make a much larger impact on an organization because of the breadth of resources you have access to. The larger your impact, the more likely you are to be noticed by senior leadership and promoted up the ranks as a result of your great work.

Bonin took this a step further by focusing primarily on the “innovation” side of the business as often put him in a position to deliver breakout successes.

Like great Rockstars, “you have to produce hits”. Bonin had lots of them.

On Great Leadership

Bonin’s mission as a leader was to be a platform for the success of those on his team. In his eyes, success as a leader was for the people on your team to become better than you.

He particularly called out key members of his team such as Cynthia Chen (now Managing Director at General Mills China), Laura Henderson (now SVP of Marketing at BuzzFeed) and Farrah Bezner (now Head of New Business Ventures at Mondelez) who have all progressed to making a major impact in their respective organizations.

Upcoming Episodes

If you like Bonin’s story, I encourage you to subscribe to the Podcast below to get immediate access to our future episodes.

Over the next few weeks we will be releasing interview with Linda Boff (CMO of GE), Marc Speichert (CMO of GSK, Former CMO of L’Oréal) and Tony Hsieh (CEO of Zappos).

Coming Soon