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Strategic Leadership In Action


Strategic Leadership – An Interview with Edgar Sandoval

CLA president and CEO Tami Heim recently interviewed Edgar Sandoval, Chief Operating Officer; World Vision, U.S. Sandoval is responsible for overseeing the implementation of World Vision’s U.S. operations and strategic plan. Sandoval joined World Vision in 2015, bringing with him a strong background in general management, strategy, operations, innovation and brand building.

Experience and Perspective

Before coming to World Vision, Edgar was the Vice President of Global Feminine Care at Procter and Gamble (P&G), the world’s largest consumer packaged-goods company, where he was responsible for the Global Innovation and Marketing strategies and plans for this $5 billion business.

Throughout his career, Edgar held steady to the belief that his biggest role was to build brands that advocate and empower women and girls to live life to their fullest potential. In 2015, Edgar had the privilege of leading the development and launch of one of the most successful branding campaigns in the history of P&G. The globally acclaimed award winning #likeagirl campaign highlighted the power of conscious and unconscious biases in creating positive change for girls.

He’s been a driving force in advancing diversity and inclusion. Edgar has won numerous awards. Among them are the Goldstein Award, Procter & Gamble’s most respected Brand Building award for outstanding and sustained business results, the Hispanic TV Lifetime Achievement Award and the AdColor/Association of National Advertisers Diversity Change Agent Award.

Edgar is a Christian leader whose life and faith journey reflect one of humility and courage. Born in southern California but raised in Guatemala and Venezuela, Edgar didn’t speak English when he returned to the U.S. at the age of 18 with $50 in his pocket. Through God’s faithfulness and hard work, he graduated from Rutgers University where he earned dual degrees with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology in 1989, and in 1994 earned his MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business.

Heim discussed strategic thinking, leadership and more with Sandoval.

What are your key priorities as Chief Operating Officer for World Vision?

The financial and organizational health of Word Vision (WV) is my key priority. Having a thriving fundraising ministry of fully engaged Christ-followers serving the needs of the most vulnerable children in the world is at the top of my agenda. To do that well, I’m focused on ensuring the evidence of our impact is strong and that our current and prospective donors know about it.

Impact story telling that breaks through the clutter is critical. Success for me means leaving an organization or a team in a better state than how you found them and that relentless pursuit of continuous improvement and excellence in what we do, for the glory of God, is my ultimate priority. After all we serve a great God, so we should give him our very best, every day.

What are the most effective ways to think and lead strategically?

The most important thing to do throughout a strategy process is bathing it in prayer. Seeking God’s guidance is always essential. It is critical during the assessment phase (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats). God has a great way to keep us 100% honest.

Any kind of spin or positioning we bring is quickly stripped away and what’s left is the bare truth, or as someone called it, “the brutal facts.” Within that honest and fact-based discernment process we can then answer two of the most important questions of effectively leading and thinking strategically: “What is success?” and “What capabilities are needed to execute with excellence?” It has been said if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there. Similarly, if you don’t have a clear definition of success, any strategy is a good strategy. The definition of success you determine should then drive the focus area choices. In the end, those choices are the strategy.

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CLA is delighted that Edgar Sandoval will be a key presenter for the Outcomes Conference 2018. He will be sharing during the NEW Collaborative Intensive General Session on April 17, 2018.

 Be sure to register for the Three-day Experience so you don’t miss this new and highly interactive learning experience.  CLA members that register four leaders at one time, earn a fifth registration FREE.

For the rest of the interview, link to the 2017 Fall edition of Outcomes Magazine – The Magazine of Christian Leadership Alliance.

CLA is grateful for the 2017-2018 Higher Thinking Blog Sponsor

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