Joan Davison didn’t take a typical path on her way to becoming a leader and CEO. She shares how despite setbacks and disappointments early on in her career, she found opportunity. In fact, at a very young age she started working a full-time job that ultimately lead her to 16 years at Staff Management SMX, where she’s grown the business from $67 million organization to a more than $700 million brand.

When it comes to the best route for leadership, Joan is a firm believer in starting in operations. She talks about her belief that everyone with leadership aspirations should sell, operate and understand the financials of an organization to best serve the client. Why? Because execution is what drives a company regardless of your role and title. As a leader, being well versed in execution allows you to clearly see where a process is broken and identify where you need to improve.

As a successful recruitment industry leader, Joan also shares practical advice for people looking to grow, including how to be resourceful, worry less about titles and keep the focus on the end goal. Joan talks about mentorship, and how she is always willing to share her experience; if someone can learn from it along the way, even better. She has an endless list of people who have shared their experiences with her throughout her career, and as a self-described constant learner, she is grateful for her own many mentors.

Finally, Joan opens up about her love for the industry, why the recruitment industry plays an important role in success, and how staffing is a unique position to be in, as you get the opportunity to truly make a difference within organizations by seeing so much.