Benedetto Vigna, the CEO of Ferrari, is navigating the luxury carmaker through a transformative phase toward electric vehicles. In a conversation with Bloomberg Television’s Francine Lacqua, Vigna discussed his leadership style, the company’s direction, and the challenges of adapting to changing market dynamics.
When asked about successful leadership, Vigna emphasized the importance of maintaining openness, acknowledging that being at the helm of an organization doesn’t mean knowing everything. Instead, he stressed the need to stay receptive to internal and external voices, fostering a culture of listening to employees, suppliers, and customers alike.
Reflecting on the risks of being a CEO, Vigna acknowledged the peril of losing touch with clients and misinterpreting their needs. He cautioned against disregarding the inputs of suppliers and employees, highlighting the significance of actively listening—a lesson captured by the metaphor of having two ears and one mouth.
Vigna advocated for smaller, empowered teams, attributing their effectiveness to a heightened sense of contribution and quicker learning from mistakes. In his view, smaller teams possess an additional gear and a more personal sense of involvement, fostering agility and speed in decision-making.
When discussing competitors, Vigna underscored the need to remain vigilant, especially regarding nimble and agile companies that can surprise the market. He emphasized the importance of heritage in the luxury sector, yet advised against complacency, urging constant attention to potential rivals regardless of their size or legacy.
Acknowledging the necessity of a CEO’s paranoia to stay ahead, Vigna stressed the significance of being attentive and responsive to the evolving business landscape, reiterating the need to listen and remain aware.
Transitioning toward sustainability is a primary challenge for Ferrari, given its status as a luxury brand. Vigna emphasized the importance of adopting greener practices to earn societal acceptance, expressing the company’s commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030.
Regarding the potential decline in driving due to evolving technology, Vigna acknowledged the shift but highlighted the enduring pleasure and value of driving skills. He cautioned against excessive reliance on technology, emphasizing its role as a tool used by individuals rather than allowing it to overshadow human agency.
Through this conversation, Vigna’s leadership philosophy emerged, emphasizing adaptability, continuous learning, and a proactive approach to staying ahead in a rapidly evolving automotive landscape.
tool that must be used by people. Not the other way around.