A Barry-Wehmiller Company

The Wall Street Journal Best-Selling Book on Leadership

When you take care of your people, they take care of your business and that drives growth. Bob Chapman shared the success and theory of Truly Human Leadership in his Wall Street Journal best-selling book, Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family.

Operating with People and Performance in Harmony

Recently named the Tharseō CEO of the Year by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the #3 CEO in the world in an Inc. article, and a Top 10 Social Capital CEO by International Business Times, Chapman is Chairman and CEO of St. Louis, MO-based Barry-Wehmiller, a $3.7B global capital equipment and engineering solutions company with more than 12,000 team members. He became the senior executive of Barry-Wehmiller in 1975 at age 30 when the 90-year-old business had $20 million in revenue, outdated technology, and a very weak financial position. Despite the obstacles, Chapman applied a unique blend of strategy and culture over the next 45+ years in leading Barry-Wehmiller through more than 130 successful acquisitions.

Bob Chapman and Raj Sisodia
Bob Chapman and Raj Sisodia (middle) with the Humanistic Leadership Academy

Great Leaders Inspire, Not Manage

Starting in 1997, Bob Chapman and Barry-Wehmiller have pioneered a dramatically different approach to leadership that strives for high morale, loyalty, creativity, and business performance. The company utterly rejects the idea that employees are simply functions to be moved around, “managed” with carrots and sticks, or discarded at will. Instead, Barry-Wehmiller manifests the reality that every single person matters, just like in a family. That’s not a cliché on a mission statement; it’s the bedrock of the company’s success. Chapman calls it Truly Human Leadership.

It's a transition from management to leadership. It starts with a shift in thinking from an organization’s highest priority is creating shareholder wealth, to the organizational balance of People, Purpose, and Performance. It’s not one over the other. It’s not about the shareholder above the other stakeholders. At Barry-Wehmiller, this philosophy is captured in the vision statement: We measure success by the way we touch the lives of people.

Chapman’s experiences and the transformation he championed were documented in the 2015 Wall Street Journal bestseller, Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family. The book is co-authored by Raj Sisodia, founder and co-author of Conscious Capitalism. Everybody Matters has been translated into eight languages. In 2016, Harvard Business School released a case study featuring Barry-Wehmiller’s unique approach to business, which is now taught at 70+ business schools around the world.

Everybody Matters chronicles Chapman’s journey to find his true calling, going behind the scenes as his team tackles real-world challenges with care, empathy, and inspiration. It also provides clear steps to transform your workplace, whether you lead two people or two hundred thousand.

Bob Chapman, Chairman and CEO of Barry-Wehmiller, with a team member.

Putting the Principles of Truly Human Leadership Into Practice

It’s one thing to read about the impact of organizational leadership on the daily lives of people; it’s another to take the steps necessary to change an institutionalized culture within a company. Many companies have no idea where to begin.

Chapman & Co. Leadership Institute was born out of Barry-Wehmiller’s desire to transform business leadership to be a powerful force for good in the world.

Chapman & Co. Leadership Institute helps companies put the principles of Truly Human Leadership, as documented in Everybody Matters, into practice. Chapman & Co. has taken lessons from parent company Barry-Wehmiller’s journey and paired that experience with scientific methods to help organizations around the world better identify, develop, and equip their leaders.

Since 2015, more than 300,000 leaders in over 600 organizations have felt the impact of Chapman & Co. – from start-ups to some of the most influential companies in the world, including American Airlines, South Africa’s Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages, Grand Rapids, Michigan-based grocery chain Meijer, the San Francisco 49ers, and the 2019 Stanley Cup champions, the St. Louis Blues.

And the results have been significant. Meijer has seen a 25 percent decrease in total store employee turnover since 2017. Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages has reduced lost time due to injuries onsite. The San Francisco 49ers organization has reduced turnover in key positions and experienced a more collaborative senior leadership team.

Chapman & Co. Leadership Institute has brought the pages of Everybody Matters to life for those companies in helping them create cultures where employees feel cared for and accountable for the success of their business.


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