WHAT PEOPLE SAY
Stephen is a great program manager and project leader. I've worked under him on various programs and projects, some lasting years, others lasting days. He's always been approachable and thorough but, perhaps more than any other manager or leader I've worked with, he's always been focused exclusively on getting the job properly done and, because of that, his projects never seem to be plagued with status issues, political issues, or personality issues.
I got to work with Stephen directly on a couple of projects. His wealth of technical and business knowledge on so many topics made completion so much smoother. I learn something valuable every time I speak with him.
Stephen has a way of fostering productive discussions, decisions, and action without ever entering the situation with an ego. He usually won't even give his opinion. One way or another though, his mysterious way of leading has others seeking his thoughts on things and looking up to him. I suspect this is because of his honesty/humanity and willingness to help with anything, regardless of how much or how little experience he has with it. Stephen will call bullshit when he sees it. He helped me shake the notion that you can't be creative in a cubicle, which led me to overcome bashfulness about my own talents and freed me to flourish as a now full-time creative.
Almost immediately after assuming his current post, Stephen re-vamped our non-functional reporting structures into highly functioning ones. He forced relevant communication between loosely coupled teams. Lines of communication that were vague or non-existent were replaced with clear lines of communication and authority. Roles were re-defined and/or sharpened. Product development that had been stunted, lying dormant for years, was unleashed overnight. The company's flagship product has grown more in the last 5 years under Stephen's leadership, than in the 10 years preceding.
I had the pleasure to have worked with Stephen at a customer facility while working for Anderson Consulting (Accenture). Stephen presents himself as a professional and a very dynamic leader who provides excellent business and IT strategies as road maps to optimize customer delivery and satisfaction. Stephen is a born leader and in doing so leads by example but also accelerates in a team environment. Stephen’s attention to detail, combined with his unrelenting drive towards customer satisfaction, makes him a valuable resource for any corporations IT tool kit. I sincerely enjoyed working with Stephen during this customer engagement.
I have been working with Stephen for about 12 years now. Prior to him taking over as the COO of our company, I was ready to leave the organization. I chose to stay because they made the decision to put Stephen in charge.
We had a very chaotic, and short sighted culture at that time, and I didn't feel like I could do anything to improve our product or impact the company in a positive way. Since Stephen has taken over, he has completely revamped our corporate culture into one in which I feel like I have a direct impact on the company's bottom line, and a say in the decisions that are made.
Looking for a big picture leader, a team player who can present a challenge and solution in a way you had not thought of but then makes perfect sense? If so, then let me introduce you to Stephen Arnett. Stephen was and remains a team player and strong leader. He focuses on challenging himself and others to define, understand and rethink the big picture. One of his many skills is the ability to understand and articulate the implications of a decision across the board. His clients relish his laser-focus on them. Stephen consistently delivers more than expected, and this is why he remains a leader I've respected for 15+ years.
Working with Stephen was truly a pleasure and raised my level of awareness regarding corporate strategy alignment. Stephen's detailed planning, ability to formulate insightful and probing questions, and perform detailed analysis to bring business processes in line is unmatched in my experience in the software industry. His business strategy development and analytical capabilities are only matched by his dedication to his employees.
Stephen’s mastery of business, marketing, finance, human resources, operations and technology--coupled with his outstanding leadership skills—steered a technology company from near obscurity into a profitable and viable competitor in its market. His courage to take leadership in a financially difficult period won the respect and trust of employees, while assuring the financial stability and growth of the company. Stephen operates with the highest integrity and respect for others. He knows how to curate innovation and productivity from his teams.
Stephen and I worked closely as we sought out M&A options for his company. Stephen was able to demonstrate great managerial talent during this process as well an adeptness in negotiating. He is a very competent technology executive with exceptional skills in taking companies from a start-up to later become market leaders.
Stephen was excellent in operational planning. He was very thorough in collecting data, very inclusive in seeking team members input, always current with industry trends, very focused on customer needs and highly analytical as he formulated strategic plans. He also was quick to adjust to changing conditions whether they were internally or externally driven. He communicated directives clearly and concisely and was always available for discussion and coaching. He tracked and measured the results from his initiatives whenever possible.
Stephen is precisely the type of person you want driving your business: sharp, insightful, confident, charismatic, and capable of not just creating a long-term strategic vision, but of developing the plan and required infrastructure to achieve it.
Stephen was by far the best COO I have ever worked with in my 20 plus years in the industry. He is a forward-thinking visionary that leads by example and is a person of utmost integrity and loyalty.
Stephen's door is always open and he will never turn you away. I believe his greatest qualities are to mentor the people that worked for him and help them become better team members. In addition, Stephen is an excellent business strategist with phenomenal ability to multitask many high-level projects.
I would recommend Stephen without reservation to anyone seeking an executive leader in their organization.
Stephen, excelled as a conduit for information flow from managers and departments. He brought a cohesive atmosphere to meetings, sharing ideas and directions from other departments which led to an overall feel of community within the company. He is an excellent communicator. I believe that without Stephen's leadership, the company would have operated on a more fragmented level.
Stephen is a top-notch observer and analyst, and he couples his observations and analysis with broad and deep knowledge of business principles and knowledge of human behavior. At Andersen, he put these together and quickly arrived at accurate diagnoses and promising recommendations for improvements. He coupled this with high energy and the ability to control what he focused on. And he coupled these abilities with a good sense of humor and the ability to work on a team. Stephen left Andersen Consulting/Accenture because it demanded too little of him. I believe anyone who works with Stephen as a subordinate, an equal, or a superior will accomplish and learn a lot.
Stephen was the creative and operational lead for our project and I had the pleasure of working for him. Stephen was breaking ground at the time, leveraging electronics and computer parts supply-chain contacts both US-based and abroad to bring products and services to his clients. Stephen was a pleasure to work with and always brought innovative thinking to every challenge and opportunity presented to him.
Stephen Arnett was hired as a senior technology leadership consultant for our start-up telemedicine company. I worked closely with Stephen creating IT and product solutions for delivering specialty medical care via a telemedicine platform. Stephen and I have collaborated on several areas of this ground floor build out. His direction, guidance, and vigilant leadership guided us through times of uncertainty as we chartered the unfamiliar territories and complexities imbedded in IT and start-ups in general. His knowledge of technology and related systems, wide range of experience with vastly different types and stages of companies, and his overall presence is truly inspiring. He is the type of leader that you are instantly drawn to because of his knowledge and priceless advice on any and all things related to making the right decisions at the right time.
Nimble and imaginative. Stephen brought to market a major revision of our company's flagship product. And he did it smoothly in a way unexpected from the Ops side of the business. Obstacles in technology, personnel, regulatory documentation -- he overcame with creative flourishes and hard work. He was a great inspiration.
Stephen is a dedicated sales and marketing professional, who came in during our early days and has done an excellent job for our channel development efforts since then.
What's most striking about Stephen is that he delivers an excellent combination of friendliness and the ability to inspire trust in his leadership. That creates an atmosphere where everyone knows that feedback is valued and used, and the choices made are the best that can be made, when Stephen is in a decision-making position.
I recommend that you consider Stephen as a consultant, or an active executive partner for your company. In my many years of experience working with various different leaders, some people stand out for their great qualities and Stephen is one of those remarkable few. He is well known for his intelligence, relentless work ethic, teamwork mentality, leadership, diligence, and overall pristine standards towards IT and related tasks. I respect him for his many accomplishments and the example he set for our management team. He has a candid ability to assess opposing viewpoints, listen to the concerns of others, and displays empathetic reactions to varying opinions. Even if there is an area he is not directly involved with making decisions or recommendations, he takes the time to gather an overall assessment to lend proper support where needed.
Stephen has improved just about every area of our company. From creating teams to manage the various areas of our operations to helping us standardize the communication and hand-offs between those teams, to mentoring and growing us as individuals.
I personally feel like I have grown leaps and bounds from where I was 12 years ago, and a lot of that growth is directly due to Stephen's friendship, leadership, and mentoring.
I will miss Stephen when he is gone, and I think that any company would benefit greatly from Stephens abilities.
I can say without any hesitation that Stephen is the most detail-oriented person I have ever met. His attentiveness to the employees’ needs coupled with his ability to analyze and streamline processes was invaluable in shaping the direction of the company. He treated everyone with respect regardless of their position and in return the employees held him in the highest regard. Stephen created a work environment where everyone felt completely comfortable coming to him with work issues or suggestions for company improvements. His door was always open and he was always ready to listen. I have the highest regard for Stephen and would recommend him to any company that values leadership, mutual respect, and fostering an employee-centric work environment.
Stephen is good in a crisis. He is able to properly weight actions and activities--both his own, and those of the people he manages. He is able to add clarity, perspective, and calm even when something goes very wrong. He has coached us through many tough situations with clear, consistent, professional approaches. Even when the people closest to him are off their game, he holds the course. I have never seen him falter or make a bad call in all the years I have worked for him.
Stephen is always plugged into the relevant information flows--both inside company walls and outside. Consistently, Stephen was always thinking one or two steps ahead of where we were currently focused, and in so doing kept the product development team properly focused on relevant issues and market needs.
Stephen understands the behind-the-scenes technology that make a website work from top to bottom. He can execute or lead a team to get you a good-looking website that meets any business needs you have, like the ability to capture lead info into your CRM. He also has the understanding and the quality to accelerate new businesses to realization with consistent knowledgeable guidance and the sense to leverage individuals' strengths to add power to the process toward release/sales goal/project completion. And Stephen can take your tech product to market or improve its success. He knows how to identify what the customer needs and he has the knowledge to advise all the way down to the "micro" level of computer software development.
Steve assisted PC Professionals in the design and implementation of our private label computer product line. He helped us in sourcing and integrating components required in our assemblies. He aided in procuring hard to find (at that time) memory products for our systems. During this period Steve was designing RAM modules and manufacturing & sourcing them overseas at a significantly reduced rate from our domestic suppliers. He was instrumental in the design and packaging of several high end Unix server platforms which we were developing for AT&T Bell Laboratories. Steve was a fundamental part in many of the successes over those years.
As the controlling shareholder, I called upon Stephen Arnett to transform our family-run business into a dynamic company of organizational excellence. We agreed upon a 5-year plan for Stephen to build robust Development, Quality Assurance, Engineering Services and Sales Departments and to map out a strategy for continued market penetration and growth. As you can always count on with Stephen, he delivered as planned.
Stephen is such an easy going, personable individual that it is easy to underestimate him. Stephen is exceptionally resourceful, incredibly attentive to detail and does everything possible to adhere to schedules. Stephen communicates with customers succinctly, thoroughly and in a manner that is always focused on customer needs. The best thing I can say for Stephen is that I knew without reservation that I could trust without question Steve's assessment, judgments and recommendations.
I have relied upon Stephen’s insights and guidance in operating our firm; he has architected an organization that is prepared for continued success. I hold Stephen in the highest regard and can offer an unqualified recommendation of his abilities.
His leadership instilled a great deal of perseverance and confidence in my abilities and I will carry that throughout my career. He showed me how to navigate through risk factors, carve out an appropriate path for asking the right questions, and how IT decisions will affect other areas of operations, and many other forecasting techniques. Throughout the time I've known him, he is collected under pressure of any kind and always encouraging when you need a supportive ear. He is a very motivating leader who focuses on identifying not only areas for improvement but also tapping into the current strengths of the company and the foundation being built.
In summation, due to his acumen and extensive experience and knowledge I would heartily recommend that you accept Stephen for any consultant opportunity he pursues. I am positive he would be as great asset to your team and their development as he has been to my personal growth and perseverance.
Stephen has an impressive command of all technical aspects of the business. But more importantly, he is able to organize and deliver clear plans for the respective teams that drive accountability and results. Stephen encourages self-reliance and initiative within each department while simultaneously creating performance tracking and reporting systems that keep goals and expectations in focus. Stephen’s methodology is certainly data-driven, but he also stresses non-quantitative aspects of the business that have been key contributors to DataNet’s success. Notably, Stephen’s focus on customer satisfaction goals for our Engineering Services Department has driven consistent revenue growth and customer retention.
Stephen was a tremendous mentor to me as well as a highly effective leader. He imparted upon me many traits that remain with me to this day. These include, but are not limited to: accountability, customer attention, and persistence.
He truly led by example and provided our IT group a roadmap and leadership style that allowed us to be very successful. I only wish I had been able to glean more time from Stephen, as my daily interactions with him provided a foundation for my future success.