Randall Hales: CEO of the Year
Congratulations to Randall Hales, president and chief executive officer at ZAGG Inc. He was named one of the 2018 CEO of the Year honorees.
When Randy Hales was just starting his first job out of college, he had an extremely demanding boss. He flew all around the country, taking “airplanes like some people take buses to work,” he says. He would show up to work at 6 a.m. and wasn’t allowed to have a scrap of paper on his desk. While it was a strain then, says Hales, that experience of being held to a very high standard only helped him as he continued on with his career.
Today, Hales still holds himself to that same high standard. While not employing the same tactics as his old-school boss, he enjoys coaching, training and mentoring those he leads, setting strategic direction and helping people mature into their roles. “The same way I had some great mentors early in my career, I love helping to influence others to have that same opportunity to grow and develop professionally,” he says.
It’s perhaps that love of coaching that makes Hales so passionate about what he does: lend his business expertise to consumer product brands and help them flourish. “I’ve been very fortunate in my career. I’ve been able to go into these little companies that are just starting to grow, needing maybe a little extra leadership and extra guidance,” says Hales. He was introduced to ZAGG in 2010, joined the board, and then became president and CEO in 2012.
Since Hales has been at ZAGG, the company has enjoyed robust growth. ZAGG has made strategic acquisitions to diversify its product portfolio, including iFROGZ and mophie. While many in the industry were skeptical about the mophie acquisition, Hales and his team decided that mophie was a great brand that had been mismanaged from the operational side. Hales takes pride in the work ZAGG has done since the acquisition to bring mophie into the fold and recreate the brand.
When Hales joined ZAGG, yearly revenues were somewhere around $170 million—in 2017, the company took in close to half a billion. He’s also instilling what Brian Stech, chief commercial officer at ZAGG, calls “a winning culture” at the company. For instance, Hales and his team promised employees that when cumulative revenue hit $1 billion, they would build a new, state of the art office building. It was a big milestone that took nearly a decade to achieve, says Hales. But more impressively? The company’s second billion was achieved a mere 24 months after its first. And their new office building is indeed much beloved by employees.
“Randy is a very dynamic leader,” says Stech. “First, he’s a very empathetic leader. He truly cares about our employees, our customers, our shareholders and the community. He connects with everybody very easily. I think he drives accountability across the organization. He truly gives the best of himself and expects the best of his team.”