An appreciation of the contributions to Sharp made by outgoing President & CEO Doug Albregts and new President & CEO Mike Marusic.
We received a call from Mike Marusic and Doug Albregts from Sharp on Thursday afternoon to share with us the news that Mike was being appointed President & CEO of Sharp’s Imaging & Information Company of America effective June 1, 2018. Doug will remain in his current position until that date.
We were saddened to learn that Doug is leaving our industry as his new position has very little to do with the world of imaging. His new employers are indeed fortunate to be gaining such a highly competent executive.
One of the many things journalists and analysts rely on is credibility, particularly of those who lead the parade. Albregts is a scrupulously honest executive and a very decent man. He treated everyone with respect and hoped that in return he would engender a like response from his staff, direct employees and dealers.
He accomplished a great deal over the six-plus years he was in the job. First and foremost, he brought Laura Blackmer into our world and what a great choice that turned out to be. He built a leadership in depth and positioned his eventual successor, Mike Marusic.
Doug also built a level of trust with dealers that was desperately needed as Sharp worked through the horrendous financial problems they were encountering. Instead of leaving the troubled ship they more than hung in and maintained a level of profitability.
To be able to steer the ship he relied immensely on Mike who he promoted to COO and Laura as VP of Dealer Sales. They were three interchangeable parts. When we started hearing all the wonderful things about Laura’s performance as the head of channel sales we reached out to Sharp dealers and asked them it what we were hearing about Laura’s ability was true and if so, why?
Dealers collectively said she exercised great leadership at the dealer council meetings, second, they respected her knowledge of the business and most of all, trusted her. They trusted her because Doug backed her and allowed her to lead instead of interjecting himself. In doing so he allowed a subordinate to shine. That is true leadership.
Doug made it known to me personally, on more than one occasion, that he would welcome any call or email from us and he encouraged one and all to reach out to Mike and Laura. He always added that he would back whatever they had to say.
Carol Cannata is one of the greatest judges of people that I have ever known. She personally thanked Doug and wanted him to know how much she appreciated the way the entire Sharp team embraced CJ’s entrance into the business. She also added that she wished he would stay in touch.
Dealers are also responding to the news of Doug's departure.
"Doug Albregts is an astute businessman, strong leader and an even better person," said Rick Bastinelli, president of Centric Business Systems in Baltimore, MD. "Doug has navigated Sharp through very difficult times. Despite the challenges he grew revenues, increased profitability and earned the respect and admiration of the dealer community. We will miss his professional guidance and the personal interactions, although I’m confident the friendships established will endure forever. Our best wishes for continued success in the future!"
"As a Sharp dealer, we have had the pleasure of working closely with Doug Albregts for a good part of that time," added Chip Miceli, president of DPOE in Des Plaines, IL. "Doug has been a great leader for the company; he has navigated Sharp through some challenging financial times, and made it a better company. We will all miss Doug. I will personally miss our “wine comparisons” at different Sharp functions. We all wish him the best of luck in his next endeavor."
Leaders like Doug Albregts do not come along every day. When they move on, to a better situation for them, we should all tip our hats and say thank you. He made us better and he made our industry better. There is not much more that I can say. Oh, I could say he plays one hell of a bass guitar.
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