Ursula Burns Leadership Style

1423 Words 6 Pages
Ursula Burns is the Chief Executive Office and Chairman of the Board of Xerox Corporation, positions she has held since 2009 and 2010, respectively. (Ursula Burns, CEO, n.d.) She is the first black woman to run a Fortune 500 company (The Associated Press, 2016) and the first woman to succeed another woman heading a Fortune 500 company (Beck, 2015). In the most recent ranking, Xerox came in at number 143 on the Fortune 500 list (Fortune 500, 2016), with an average ranking of 130 on the Fortune 500 since 2000, as compiled from year-by-year rankings. For 2015, Xerox reported over 18 billion dollars in revenue and almost five billion dollars in gross income. (Xerox Corp., 2016)
As a woman, I wanted to write, and learn, about a female in an executive
…show more content…
Olga Burns. First and foremost, Ursula Burns credits her mother with her success. She often quotes her mother’s admonition that “Where you are is not who you are.” (WYSK, 2012) She talks about her mother giving her children courage, will, and love; raising them to never feel that they were lacking in comparison to others. (MacLellan, 2009)
Olga Burns also advised her children to focus on leaving every place you come to a little better, rather than focusing on money and power. Olga’s third piece of advice that has stayed with her daughter is to “make sure that you happen to the right things” and not just worry about what happens to you. (Sellers, 2011)
Olga was “desperate” to make sure her children were educated and prepared to leave the projects behind. Ursula Burns has translated that into her passion for providing leadership for women and minorities and advancing the benefits of STEM. (Sellers, 2011) As Ursula has gotten older, she has come to recognize and value the wisdom of her mother’s words and guidance. (Burns) So powerful is her late mother’s influence that Ursula views everything she does through a filter of thinking through how her mother would react to the situation at hand and changing course accordingly. (Fast Company Staff,

Related Documents