Meet the Team: Craig!

Craig is our CEO at GXG, and the former CEO of a $5B Fortune 500 subsidiary. Craig has more than two decades of success in executive leadership positions.

Why is Grit important to you?

As a leader, I sometimes get asked what makes a company successful. I used to get so perplexed by questions like these. I just never had an answer for them. I knew that a great team of people was essential, but I couldn’t quite articulate what differentiated a great team from a “just okay” one – until I bumped into Angela Duckworth’s work on grit.

Duckworth defines grit as the intersection of passion and perseverance and claims that this trait is the key to success. Her insights really resonated with me, so I decided to ask each member of my team to take the grit test that Duckworth had created. My team scored exceptionally high on the grit test. That’s when I realized…it’s all about grit. Grit was the glue that held my team together. Grit is the magic that makes a company successful. It was a huge a-ha moment for me.

What is your Grit score?

Hm. I don’t disclose it publicly. That’s highly confidential information. Just kidding. I’d probably need to retake it to know the exact number, but it’s gotten close to a 5. I always tell people that I’m pretty average in essentially all areas, except for grit. I didn’t go to an elite college, wasn’t always the most serious student or the strongest athlete, but I’ve always had a whole lot of passion and I always persevere. I think that’s what’s gotten me here today.

Curious what your grit score is? You can take the quiz here!

What’s a personal hobby that you’re passionate about?

Does spending time outside count as a hobby? I’ve always loved the outdoors – fishing, boating, tennis, running… all of the above. I especially love to spend time outside with my family.

What’s your out of the office learning goal?

Outside of the office, I take my faith pretty seriously. I teach bible study here in Hilton Head, so that’s where I pursue most of my non-work learning.

What’s the greatest advice you’ve ever gotten?

One of the most valuable pieces of advice I’ve ever received is from my father. He always reminded me not to get too high in the highs, and not to get too low in the lows. That’s always been big for me, both personally and professionally.

What’s something interesting that you’ve read, listened to, or watched recently?

I have to admit, I’m pretty fanatical about the book Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. It’s actually a great compliment to Angela Duckworth’s research on grit. It’s all centered around the question: how do you reach the level of exceptional performance? This type of research continues to motivate me in my own work. I would definitely recommend checking this book out if you haven’t already.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was growing up, I wanted to be a lawyer or a preacher. I didn’t become either – but plans change, you know?

Are you a cat or a dog person?

Definitely dog. We have some cool cats at home but still, definitely dog.

Craig's dog, Riggs.