We had the good fortune of connecting with Shadrach Stephens and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shadrach, what’s the most important lesson your business/career has taught you?
As a business leader and an engineer I’d say that the most important lesson I’ve learned in my career is the power of collaboration and the impact it has on the development of the professionals around the world. Collaboration is the next generation of innovation and in order for professionals to thrive in the 21st century, we all must engage. All of the most successful projects that I have been a part of have been the result of collaboration from diverse teams. Sure, it takes time for people to understand and respect each other’s professional backgrounds and experiences, but the results are magical once the professional community at large starts to trust each other and collaborate more. As a result of this important aspect, I started a project called Re.engineer. We are challenging the status quo by creating a bridge between professionals at all levels, one that enables them to leverage solutions, techniques, innovation, technology and overall leadership perspectives.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
It takes decades to develop the experience needed to be recognized as a subject matter expert. Many advanced professionals are retiring which is requiring the next generation of professionals to progress more quickly in their industries. So what’s the solution? More knowledge sharing and mentorship. The great news is, these knowledgeable experts love giving back, it extends their legacy even after they retire. I too was thrusted into leadership roles quickly but I had an exceptional team of mentors that guided me. As a global leader for a Fortune 100 company, my core responsibility is to empower my team so that they can thrive as leaders amongst their teams. Through this process of “re-engineering”, all of my teams combined have created $90 million of value. How did we do it? Through collaboration and leveraging. We created Re.engineer so that anyone can research our database of professional stories and connect with other professionals in hopes of developing collaboration relationships. We want to take the stress out of professional development by providing a bridge between senior and junior level professionals. We exist to help professionals with transferring knowledge and skills.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Since I am a dad (Mekhi 3, Moriah 1), I spend most of my leisure time with my family. Our favorite hot spots are the Children’s museum, the Houston Zoo and anything that has “bounce” in the name. There are a couple of seasonal attractions that are a must do, 1) Dickinson Festival of Lights in the winter, 2) The Sheridan Splashway Water Park in the summer, and 3) the Dewberry Farm in Brookshire during the fall. When we are feeling a little more adventurous we are only a few hours away from San Antonio where we enjoy visiting the Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch which is a drive through zoo where the kids can interact with animals you would normally see on the safari, SeaWorld which normally is an all-day affair and I think our next adventure will be the Natural Bridge Caverns the largest known commercial caverns in the state of Texas.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d love to shoutout our entire Re.engineer community of over 1,500 members. We have influencers and leaders from Fortune 500 companies to Successful Entrepreneurs to College Professors and they represent $38 million of value creation stories on our website. Every professional that has contributed a story, been featured on the website, or has engaged on our social media platforms deserves credit for building this incredible, collaborative community. I’d be remiss if I did not recognize my wife, Marie Smith-Stephens and family for all of the love and support they have given me throughout the startup process. From the photoshoots to the late nights and some travel, they have been my foundation and motivation for continuing on this journey. Even though they are behind the scenes cheering me on, they deserve much of the credit for providing the inspiration needed to be successful in this venture.