October 4, 2016

CBIZ celebrates 20 years: Q&A with CEO Jerry Grisko

As CBIZ continues to ring in its 20th anniversary, CEO Jerry Grisko took some time out to discuss the company’s past, present and future:   

Tell us a bit about your career at CBIZ and becoming the CEO this year.

It has been a wonderful journey. Before joining CBIZ in 1998, I was a partner at a national law firm. Having my own practice, I never planned on leaving.

Then, I was introduced to CBIZ through my work as an outside mergers and acquisitions lawyer. The more I worked with the team, the more I understood CBIZ’s unique value proposition and services, and the more I was intrigued. I began my career at CBIZ six months later, managing mergers and acquisitions. In early 2000, I moved to the operations side, becoming president. Over the next 15 years, I worked alongside Steve Gerard, our former CEO and current chairman, and gained exposure to every aspect of the business. I took over the role upon Steve’s retirement – I have never worked harder, and never enjoyed it more.

The ideal job for me is one where I am proud of the company I am working for, never stop learning and growing, and enjoy the people I work with. That was true when I started at CBIZ, and remains true today.

If you had to pick one reason you are most proud to work for the company, what would it be?

I am proud to work at CBIZ because of our culture and our people. We revisited our core values as we prepped for our 20th anniversary, and they truly reflect the culture we have built:

  • We do the right thing, every time, even when it is not the easy thing – for our clients, for our people, for the communities we are in.  
  • Our people matter, and we value and recognize their contributions. We are committed to their professional and personal growth and to a healthy work-life balance.
  • We are dedicated to the success of our clients – not just in providing services our clients expect, but going above and beyond.
  • We have fun, but we want to win. We want to be recognized as a place where people want to pursue careers, and where clients come to obtain exceptional and practical solutions to their most challenging  issues, and have impactful decisions made.
  • We are one CBIZ. We are so much stronger together than individually.

Why do you think CBIZ has been able to remain successful over the past 20 years?

CBIZ has remained successful because we focus on our clients and on our team members. I travel to our offices across the country so I can learn how the corporate office can bring value to clients and team members. At CBIZ, we have team members serving clients, as well as corporate staff who serve those team members. We make an effort to understand our teams’ needs. For clients, we get to know them, which helps create an intimate relationship and takes service to the next level. Our success over time relates to our extraordinarily talented team and how we work with clients.

Looking to the future, what is next for the company?  

We are positioned to add even greater value to clients and team members in the future. The small mid-market businesses that we serve are facing off against new challenges, and most competitors do not have the scale to bring real solutions. There is no other company like CBIZ – we have a national footprint and capital to invest in tools to help businesses solve their issues. As I think about the future, I reflect back on the success to date with pride. But I’m even more excited about our future, which is even brighter.

The image below highlights some of CBIZ’s major milestones: 

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