The power of Servant Leadership – Have you ever been Cinca’d?

I was recently invited to attend the farewell party for Ed Cinca, the outgoing VP, Cardiometabolic Marketing, at Novo Nordisk.  In full transparency, I had never met Ed Cinca in person and had only had leadership development conversations with him based on the recommendation of a CEO who thinks very highly of Ed. (Ed was responsible for Novo’s GLP1 portfolio for both Diabetes and Obesity)
I was the only non-Novo attendee at the party.  I was very impressed by the number of attendees – well over 40 folks on a Monday night.  They were all there to celebrate Ed and to share what he had meant to each of them.
One of the tributes really stuck out to me. A young professional named Vanessa Costain asked Ed if he knew that there was a term that was frequently used across the Novo commercial teams – the term/question was, “Have you ever been Cinca’d?”.

She explained that the term originated because of how Ed always challenged his teams’ recommendations, strategies and tactics by thoughtfully ensuring that they had considered all potential constituents – patients, providers, compliance, regulatory, sales, etc.  When she posed the question, it was amazing to watch the party goers 40+ heads start nodding up and down in unison validating her statement.
Vanessa went on to explain that everyone that worked with Ed knew that he truly cared about each of them and the patients that they served.  He made them think differently and they all acknowledged how his pushing/prodding in a thoughtful and caring manner had helped each of them grow professionally and made them all better leaders themselves.
I was very impressed by the number of his colleagues that shared with me how many times in their career that they had tried to look for opportunities to work with Ed again. Everyone wanted to be part of his team because of his focus on development and doing the right things. His colleague’s all touched on how he made each of them feel needed, respected and appreciated. Needless to say, there were very few dry eyes in attendance as people shared their sincere appreciation for a true Servant leader that put the needs of others and the company before his own.

I couldn’t help but wonder, when each of us looks back at the teams we have managed and led, what kind of legacy have we created.  We all would be very fortunate to create a culture where people ask, “Have you ever been Cinca’d?”

I would love to hear from you if you have a Servant leader like Ed that has made a difference in your career.

Bob Jansen, CEO of Zensights
July 19, 2021