Mark Casady – Chairman, LPL Financial

Mark Casady is chairman of LPL Financial. He joined the company in May 2002 as COO, became president in April 2003, and became chairman and CEO in December 2005. Previously, Mark was managing director, mutual fund group for Deutsche Asset Management, Americas (formerly Scudder Investments). He joined Scudder in 1994 and held roles as managing director, Americas, head of global mutual fund group and head of defined contribution services. He was also a member of the Scudder, Stevens and Clark board of directors and management committee. He is former chairman and a current board member of the Insured Retirement Institute and serves on FINRA’s board of governors.

1. How do you define success?
By how we help others be successful. Sort of the network effect of joint success. The more success my customers, employees, or my family has results in more success for me.

2. What is the key to success?
Hard work. Knowing what you are trying to accomplish with others and not stopping until you attain your goal or beyond.

3. Did you always know you would be successful?
I have always been very focused and have tried to give any activity my all. I am still wondering if I will be successful!

4. When faced with adversity, what pushes you to keep moving forward?
My motto is “one step forward.” I don’t worry about getting all adversity solved today, just some part of it. Eventually, you overcome it by pushing ahead.

5. What is the greatest lesson you’ve ever learned?
Be good to others. Nice guys and gals do finish first, so keep your elegance and humanity.

6. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I love spending time with my family and friends. Boating on Cape Cod or taking long walks wherever I find myself are enjoyable. I also like to travel, especially to new places, to understand other cultures and people.

7. What makes a great leader?
Awareness of others’ needs and goals. Getting alignment and trust are critical to leading.

8. What advice would you give to college students about entering the workforce?
Look for experience in areas where you are passionate. Try it, and if you don’t like it, you can always change later. Your early career is all about getting experience, so get as much as you can the first few years out of school.

This interview is an excerpt from Success: 30 Interviews with Entrepreneurs & Executives by Jason Navallo.