Interview with Tim Chadwick, CEO of MMC Corporation

Culture-Driven Leadership

Tim Chadwick, CEO of MMC Corp since 2014, has a secret sauce for leadership born of his respect for long-time K-State Football Coach Bill Snyder. They both believe that the three most powerful words in building effective teams are “I appreciate you”. As an employee-owned company, Chadwick is laser focused on developing the next level of leadership. “I have high expectations but also high appreciation for our hard-working team. My greatest satisfaction is being able to recognize and reward their performance.”

Founded in 1932, MMC Corp is a national commercial construction services company based in Overland Park, KS, and has been a 100% ESOP for 19 years.  Chadwick has been with them his entire career. He got his beginning on the general construction side at MW Builders, and moved to Kansas City as COO in 2011. Since then, MMC Corp has seen 10% average year over year growth, most of which has come organically.

Growing up in the organization gives Chadwick an appreciation for the employee-owned client-focused culture fostered by the ESOP. “Because I have come through the ranks, I have the benefit of credibility across the organization. They know that I understand their roles and challenges. It helps when it comes to garnering support for our strategy and programs,” says Chadwick. “One of the keys to success for us is transparency. It is critically important. We are an open book. Everyone has a scorecard and everyone knows what the score is. Our team embraces the challenge of meeting goals and knowing they will be recognized for their results. Our overarching principle is “work hard and have fun.”

What has driven MMC Corp success under Chadwick’s leadership? 

In addition to the high priority on culture and talent development, MMC Corp invested in an ERP system in 2018 that enabled them to have a fully “integratable” system. As a result, they are challenging themselves to set and track various key business components to aid in decision-making. Chadwick thinks it is important for data and people to align—so understanding data helps put everyone on the same page. “My leadership style is to involve as many people and perspectives as possible. We don’t have 100% consensus every time but we have healthy discussion and data will contribute to that.”

Recently, MMC Corp has acquired a building automation services company which enables them to capture additional space in the building construction supply chain. They have started with a regional business in northern Nevada and anticipate adding to this piece of their business in more markets.

To achieve strategic clarity throughout the organization, Chadwick depends on rigorous communication. “Daily, in management discussions, as we deal with challenges or initiatives, we tie it back to one of our five strategic plan goals. We might even say, pull out the strategic plan and let’s talk about tactics for Goal #4. Now, many of our leaders carry the plan with them to meetings. When we communicate to all employees we always communicate how any change aligns with our five goals. Quarterly, we record a video that goes to all employees and I do a blog 2-3 times a month. Topics range from employee ownership to risk intelligence to technology initiatives.”

What is your favorite quote?

“The best way to predict the future is to create it,” by Abraham Lincoln. And that is what Chadwick does every day with his hard-working, fun-loving, leadership team.

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