CXO Conversation Podcast

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Leading with Impact: Laura Ortman’s Journey to CEO at COLOGIX

In this episode of CXO Conversations, Michael Mitchel converses with Laura Ortman, CEO of COLOGIX, revealing her remarkable journey through the tech industry to the pinnacle of leadership. Laura shares insights from her diverse career, including pivotal roles at Lockheed Martin, Jeppesen, VMware, and Hologic, culminating in her leadership at North America’s leading network-neutral interconnection and Hyperscale Edge data center company. She elaborates on COLOGIX’s critical role in powering the cloud and internet infrastructure, emphasizing the unique challenges and opportunities of growing a business in collaboration with private equity.

Laura’s leadership philosophy is deeply rooted in her athletic background, valuing teamwork, perseverance, and a results-driven approach. She advocates for a comprehensive understanding of business operations, stressing the importance of broad experience across various business facets for effective leadership and informed decision-making. Her journey to CEO, fueled by a desire to make a significant organizational impact, highlights her belief in the power of mentorship, continuous learning, and adaptability.

The discussion delves into her customer experience strategy, illustrating her commitment to listening, action, and rebuilding trust to enhance customer retention. Through anecdotes, Laura demonstrates how she transforms challenging customer interactions into opportunities for growth, reinforcing her mantra “Together We Win” and the collective nature of success and learning within an organization.

Laura concludes with invaluable advice for aspiring C-suite executives: the necessity of building strong networks, fostering a positive corporate culture, and the courage to take risks and embrace continuous learning. Her narrative, from making cold calls to steering a tech giant, exemplifies resilience, strategic relationship building, and the transformative power of a supportive team environment, offering profound lessons for listeners aiming for the C-suite.

Timestamps

  • Introduction to Laura Ortman and COLOGIX (00:01:06)
  • Overview of COLOGIX’s Business Model (00:01:58)
  • Differences Between Public and Private Companies (00:03:48)
  • Athletic Background Influence on Leadership (00:06:23)
  • Attraction to the CEO Role (00:08:48)
  • Moment of Realization for CEO Ambition (00:10:47)
  • Leadership Philosophy: Presence, Listening, and Leading (00:15:19)
  • Implementing ‘Together We Win’ Mantra (00:16:20)
  • Adapting Leadership Approaches Post-2020 (00:17:57)
  • Advice for Aspiring C-Suite Executives (00:20:41)
  • The Importance of Building a Trustworthy Team (00:22:17)
  • Role and Challenges in Customer Experience (00:25:32)
  • Acquiring Listening Skills and Importance of Crucial Conversations (00:29:33)
  • Reflections on Building a Network and Importance of Culture in Organizations (00:32:56)

Resources

Thank you to ACG Denver for being a sponsor of CXO Conversations Podcast. Association for Corporate Growth in its role as the hub of the middle market business community for quality networking, education and events. Connections are made, deals are formed and thought leadership is exchanged.  

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In this episode of CXO Conversations, host Michael Mitchel engages with Laura Ortman, CEO of COLOGIX, to explore her dynamic journey from the athletic fields through various pivotal roles in the tech industry to her current position at the helm of a leading network-neutral interconnection and Hyperscale Edge data center company.