Cablefax The Magazine - July 2013 - 13

2013 Top Ops Awards
MSO REGIONAL EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR
Steve Hackley
Comcast
For business leaders, one measure of success
is how effectively they use available
tools. Another measure is staff morale. On
both counts, Steve Hackley has proven himself
successful by any measure. Of course,
don't tell him that. " This honor really is more
of a we thing, than a me thing, " he says, pushing the spotlight
on the " hard-working employees of the Greater Boston Region. "
While many executives look solely at the bottom line, Comcast's
SVP for the Greater Boston Region knows employees are
key to a company's performance, particularly in highly competitive
New England. " We have great products, " he says, " but at
the end of the day, they're delivered by people... [and] I want
ours to feel energized... like individuals, not just part of a big
machine... When they arrive at work each morning, I want them
to feel psyched and say, 'Hey, this is cool'. "
" Steve is equally as passionate about the customer
experience as he is about the employee experience, " says
Kevin Casey, Comcast's NE Division President, who has
worked with Hackley for more than 20 years. What makes
him unique " is that he understands the business we are in,
as well as the business of people, " he says. Adds Hackley:
" I recognize our business is complicated and getting more
so. I think I have to spend twice as much time communicating
with employees as I did even just a few years ago. "
Customers are also happy. Just look at the marks his region
receives on " Voice of the Customer " survey scores, where the
area's sales teams, service center and call center rank among
the best in Comcast's 20 regions. Indeed, Comcast EVP, COO
Dave Watson calls Hackley " a remarkable leader at every level "
and notes his and his team's " keen focus on operations and
customer care. " And CableFAX is just one among many honoring
the way Hackley treats employees. His region has been
recognized as one of the best places to work in Massachusetts
by the Boston Business Journal every year since 2004. The
Boston Globe has given Comcast's regional operations similar
kudos from 2008-2011.
Another indicator: Philadelphia's trust in the Greater
Boston Region, which often is chosen as the trial and launch
area for Comcast's newest products. " Our employees take
that as a point of pride, we like being irst, " Hackley says.
Twice yearly Hackley leads a live, all-employee broadcast where
he provides updates on the company and region. While such
exercises can be moribund affairs in the hands of less charismatic
leaders, Hackley makes it a point to inspire and invigorate
employees during these broadcasts.
He also distributes short, YouTube-like videos roughly twice
each month so he can keep employees updated. The live
broadcasts and videos have been a best practice that several
of his peers have adopted throughout the country. His monthly,
hour-long leadership calls begin with 20 minutes dedicated to
recognizing outstanding employees.
While Hackley respects the power of social media, he
views it as a complement and not a substitute for pressing
the lesh. This year, his goal is to travel to every major Comcast
ofice under his purview and conduct Town Hall meetings
to gather feedback from employees on the customer
* The 4,100 employees of Comcast's Greater Boston Region
serve nearly 2 million customers in Massachusetts, Maine
and New Hampshire.
* Sales and customer service are in Hackley's blood. He started
with AT&T in sales in the late 1980s and later moved to Fidelity
Investments during the go-go era of the 1990s, where he
helped design the firm's customer care operations.
* Hackley serves on the City Year Boston Board of
Directors and participates in the City
Year organization. He also is a board
member for the Granite, NH, United
Way and The Partnership, Inc., which is
committed to the advancement
of professionals of color in the
Boston area.
CableFAX: The Magazine
July 2013
and employee experiences. He also relishes dropping in,
" seeing employees in their natural state... without it being
a scripted command performance. It's got to be organic. I
know employees appreciate this. "
Comcast customers in Hackley's area should indeed be
enjoying their cable experience more now that aptly named The
World of More, a four-year undertaking, is complete. One of
Hackley and his team's major accomplishments this year, the
initiative provides customers from Brunswick, ME, to Brewster,
MA, with all-digital channels and additional HD programming.
On average, 65 additional HD channels were added in each of
the 315 towns in the Greater Boston footprint, bringing all towns
to 100+ HD channels. The project also opened up signiicant
bandwidth, which the region will use for product improvements
such as Video On Demand. Hackley's division was the irst in
the country to complete this massive project.
None of this is surprising given Hackley's brand of leadership.
As Casey puts it, " He truly understands the role of a leader. And
he knows that to have loyal and engaged customers, you must
have committed and engaged employees. "
- Seth Arenstein
cablefaxmag.com
13
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Cablefax The Magazine - July 2013

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