Leading in Times of Challenge with Billi Hunt
Billi Hunt is the executive director of the Cultivation Corridor. She works to attract new companies and talent to Greater Des Moines (DSM) and enhance agricultural opportunities within the region. She has previously worked for Dupont and is active in many DSM organizations.
Billi Hunt Leadership Tips
During the Floods of ’93, Hunt was a new college graduate. The organization she worked for was on Court Avenue in Downtown DSM. Hunt felt fortunate because even though she was the last person hired prior to the floods, she didn’t lose her job that summer. In that instance, there was a lot of fear about losing her job. In 2008, the ag industry is what helped keep the state strong during the recession. Hunt says the ag industry saw a rebirth then and was not as negatively affected as other sectors. With COVID-19, she says all industries are in it together. Hunt says that it is a humbling experience to see people coming together to get through the pandemic. When it comes to leading a team in crisis, she says it’s important that your team members be honest so that you can make the best decisions possible. As a leader, Hunt says never be afraid to pivot. Look around and find the best person available. Who works well in crisis? Leadership may shift during this time and then again when things go back to normal.
As a leader, Hunt explains how she recharges during times of stress. She says it’s essential to be clear and open with your family. To be successful at work, your family has to be 100% behind you. Be clear about your expectations and what you need each day and make sure your employees feel like they can talk to you about what they need, too. Give yourself and your employees grace and find time to laugh.
Listen to the entire podcast by clicking here.
The Leading in Times of Change podcast is brought to you by the Greater Des Moines Partnership and hosted by Mike Jefferson. The podcast features community leaders from across Greater Des Moines (DSM). To listen to more Partnership podcasts, click here.