John Bayne, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Mobile Consumer Electronics, Corning Incorporated
Q. What was the problem you were grappling with?
A. I was asked to lead the Corning Gorilla Glass business in 2015 when it was at an inflection point. The market for smartphones was maturing and the organisation needed to evolve and adapt. We also had a wide range of customers - from industry leaders to local brands in emerging regions. We had to make a decision on how to manage the business and the brand going forward.
Q. Who did you approach and why?
A. Corning's Global CEO (Wendell Weeks) knew that we could keep growing the Gorilla Glass business. He encouraged me to set a goal to significantly grow the business in a maturing market, and ensure that we not only stay close to our customers, but also identify opportunities for Gorilla Glass
Q. What was the best advice you ever received?
A. His advice was: "If you don't have the best product, you can only find a way to win some time. If you have the best product, you can find a way to win all the time."
Q. How effective was it in resolving your problem?
A. As soon as I took over, I worked on enhancing the culture and getting closer to our customers, including those in India. I knew it would be an important region with the transition from feature phones to smartphones, so I made several trips to meet local brand owners and speak at conferences. I also ensured we continued to develop the world's best cover glass innovations for smartphones, laptops and wearables.