Gary Loveman and Harrah’s Entertainment

This post is directly linked to the Diamonds in the data mines post.  The articles contain the same information about what Gary Loveman did with the company and how he transitioned the company from a normal gaming company into one that was thinking outside of the normal casino box.  His competitors were mainly concentrating on bringing customers in and not so much about retaining them.  They do this by creating a theme park idea and attracting the customers to “themes.”  Loveman did a completely different approach.  His approach was centered on the high-value customer.  This was the middle aged working person who would typically come to the casino and spend their paycheck in hopes of becoming a high card member.

Right off the bat Gary got rid of many “tenured” people in high positions that he saw weren’t doing the company any good as far as expansion.  He replaced them with people that didn’t have anything to do with the casino industry.  This was a huge step towards his success.  Other gaming companies always hired inside their own community and this doesn’t allow for out-of-the-box thinking.  He highered graduates and people who challenged the norm.  He did all this and while doing all of this he gained credibility in his company by letting people take care of themselves.  He didn’t micromanage people and he made them accountable for themselves and for their jobs.  He did his job of providing direction and almost a cheerleader towards their goals.  He made himself available to everyone in the company and was very visible in the company.  This instilled a sense of equality in the workplace.

One of the main things he did for Harrah’s is that he brought science back into business.  No one would incorporate a new idea without first testing it.  There was always a control group and with this there always are results that the company as a whole can use.  The company linked this to their computer system that tracts customers and the evidence is clear and right in front of the people as to what avenue to take.  Instead of each individual casino having it’s own operation he combined them all and made them all function together.  This allows for a much better control over the big picture as a whole.  He made it very clear to the employees that the shareholders owned their job and that they did not own the job.  The always had to be accountable to the job and ultimately the shareholders.

One of the biggest things that contributed to Gary’s success was his support.  Satre, who hired him, always was right at his side and never overpowered him.  He stood by every one of his decisions.  The employees recognized this and this also gave him a great deal of respect.  As the new CEO of Harrah’s he is still challenging himself and the company and will succeed as long as he continues to do so.


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