Unduplicated Success

Ursula M. Burns makes history as the first African American woman to head Xerox

provider of business process outsourcing and IT services will enable Xerox to broaden geographic territories through its global sales network while increasing revenue flow.

Her prowess has placed her in demand in the boardroom and at the highest levels of government. “One of the many things I admire about Ursula is her clarity of vision,” offers Kenneth I. Chenault, chairman and CEO of American Express, one of the corporations on which Burns serves as a board member. “If you want people to follow, you need to give them a sense of where you are leading them. Ursula knows where she wants to lead and she articulates it exceptionally well. That’s one of the things that make her an inspirational leader.” In December, these attributes led President Obama to tap her for the White House campaign for excellence in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education.

Reluctant to embrace publicity, Burns is squarely focused on the business at hand. “It’s all about the company,” she insists. “If you make the company great, if people say this is a great place to work, it’s a great place to develop technology, it’s a great place to present value to customers, then you can actually become famous. If you’re trying to become famous, then it’s almost surely going to be a disaster. But if you want to be associated with greatness, it’s about being associated with greatness, not about [you] being great.”

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7 Responses to Unduplicated Success

  1. I can’t wait to read the February issue with Ursula Burns on the cover. I can’t help but think of her position as one of the best examples of the exchange of power in this nations history when Anne Mulcahy retired from Xerox and handed the helm of the Corporation over to her. Now, that’s what empowerment is all about.

  2. Gerald says:

    I’m proud Ms Burns, but I’d be even more proud the corporation was started by and owned mostly by us.

  3. Gerald says:

    I’m proud Ms Burns, but I’d be even more proud if the corporation was started by and owned mostly by us.

  4. kathy says:

    Gerald, who is “us”?

  5. Pingback: Black Enterprise Business Report talks with XEROX CEO Ursula Burns : BusinessJournalism.org Reynolds Center for Business Journalism

  6. Pingback: STEM Spotlight: Burns Leads Effort to Change The Equation - BLACK ENTERPRISE

  7. Pingback: The Power of Color: 9 Women Who Nail It Every Time | AfroBuzz Central

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