Mauricio Gutierrez got a crash course in how to be chief executive. He was tapped to run NRG Energy one year ago after his boss, David Crane, had been fired abruptly. Suddenly, Gutierrez was in charge of running one of America’s biggest utilities with more than $14 billion in revenues serving millions of customers in 50 states. Sure, he was the utility’s COO, but this was his first-ever CEO job.
Fortune’s Susie Gharib asked him about the most important adjustment he had to make as the boss for NRG’s 10,000 employees. “You have to learn to listen more. You have to be open to different ideas,” Gutierrez says. “Once you have all this information you have to be decisive because people want leaders that are decisive and that shows them a clear path and a clear vision.”
Gutierrez also says he has been guided by some leadership advice he received from his father who ran his own engineering firm. “Be the first one in the office. And be the last one to leave,” he says his father told him. “People always watch the CEO and you need to show great work ethic around your employees.”