Former Sotheby’s COO’s Most Valuable Professional Skill: Listening

Colloquium in Advanced Management

When he joined Sotheby’s in 2007, former Chief Operating Officer Bruno Vinciguerra quickly discovered how important it was to let each employee leverage his or her unique expertise.

“When you enter a company, you have to say, ‘How do I make sense here? Not as the chief of one department or another, but as an individual, what can I contribute?’” Vinciguerra told Master of Advanced Management students during a Colloquium in Advanced Management on February 23. “And then, you see how they can help you, too. You build these fantastic one-on-one relationships that are mutual and mutually beneficial.”

Vinciguerra has worked in a number of different industries over the course of his career, holding positions at Walt Disney, Dell, and Bain & Company before coming to Sotheby’s. Listening carefully to and being open to learning from others were among the most valuable skills he has developed, he said. He believes in continuously honing these skills. Each time he switched into a different industry, it was an opportunity to re-evaluate his own knowledge and find new ways of doing business.

“When you’re in a new industry, you realize you don’t know everything,” he said. “You suddenly realize that you have all of these experts around you, and to be a strong leader, you have to listen to them. You have to understand how they make a decision, what drives them, and what they react to in order to get to the right answer.”

About the Event

Colloquium in Advanced Management with Bruno Vincituerra, former COO of Sotheby’s.

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