How T-Mobile CEO Views Future of Wireless

T-Mobile CEO John Legere caught up with Rebecca Jarvis at CES 2017 in Las Vegas for an episode of "Real Biz With Rebecca Jarvis." See what Legere sees for the future of wireless and his keys to running a successful company.
12:50 | 01/12/17

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Transcript for How T-Mobile CEO Views Future of Wireless
I finally figured out lately that. There are rules as to what a CEO supposed to be this stupid rules. And you know just being who I am its its work and I have I've which it didn't take me 58 years to figure out. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Let's talk about your story so you grew up in Fitchburg Massachusetts us. Parents art teacher in a nurse yep where you always outspoken. No. When that's a good question. Now Dylan I'm still probably not totally. Spoke out. I mean I'm not I'm not the guy in in the party that walks around and you know kind of is mr. social. But your guy who puts up the manifesto. I've got an opinion you take on your competitors. Very locally. You you've done some things that a lot of other people in other industries and at your industry would probably shy away from general Dempsey yeah. Well you know who who kidding me and it look at company yet listen the and I'm very proud of it that the issues are in my more colorful and different. Then other CEOs just the fact has much of Florence the other CEOs as it is that on the continuum I'm a little bit outspoken. I've always been an athlete I've always been a competitor. And I I love the fight I'm a big game. What I do as a leader is. Is especially in failing times find a path forward said the strategy give hope communicate aligned people behind me. And I don't spend. I don't I don't do like outside today it's great that would do I do customers and employees. I don't go to those meetings were Smart people talk at each other all the time. It is speaking. I mean I I I don't. Michael talked my employees I've I've got eighteen major call centers and I've been to every 15 times. I just fly and I stand on a piece of furniture takes self fees and say thank you. I go I visit stores that day those overall there. That those that that people that I attacked your customers or consumers. Social media out attack. Not just so so when I when I took this job I'd I didn't know anything about wireless because it's not what I did what I did every night. As I would dial into an observation of the war I can hear both sides of customer service calls. And I would you know get a bottle of wine and I would sit for hours and I would hear hello can I help him I would hear everything that went on I learned everything I needed to know. And then ultimately in the beginning for it to begin I still do you still do it not been. Passed it waits to you're saying if if you're T-Mobile customers there's a possibility on the call with customer service and CEO is listening at absolutely. And then the CEO goes into his staff meeting and when we're talking we have tremendous amounts of data. But if if that call. Doesn't have the same. Kind of gist of the data it's wrong. And then the the other thing is that conversation in I go I go almost every day to store we have we have thousands thousands story. And I walked in and asked three questions house business my job is to get people in the door. A you make any money. The average age of these kids it's point 728. And no matter how self naturalize and you are they're not making money. You know it's not and in Missouri and I can do can I help. And then you you find out what's going on in those two interactions customer care call in its sales retail call tells you everything you need to know. And all the stuff we do here today. A lot of that comes from reporters sought on the big Twitter user quite a bit of instrument FaceBook and it up by a little cooking show. But I you know I get ideas here now. I probably spend. More time that. Anybody would think is appropriate for CBO on social people are realizing it's not again I'm not in their plane I'm learning everything I need to know. From my customers employees. I've got three and a half million you know follows a growing but with a big base. And I have over 500000. Viewers a week my slocum but Sunday's show and FaceBook live. Now they solid food games. We'll have to pay their powerful but what is the most valuable thing you learn from social media and the interactions had. Just wrecked open honest feedback from customers and from employees what he wanted that interestingly. When somebody. In the housing today somebody sends a note. And then you reply. It hit the EU customer for life they forget what their problem was sometimes I actually go in and I'll say can I call you. And I'll call. It is that these are just so now we know what I've tried to do is how do you scale that race and truthfully what I've got now. Is if you take full time part time temporary employees we have about a 100000 people to do something T-Mobile and weekday. I would tell you that almost all those people enjoy doing the same thing. So the culture of our company's everybody. Is doing this every day and and that's one of the things I'm I'm proudest. With Tivo tell you. Weird story which is what a progress does it if you go to a store that one in Las Vegas and its 8 PM in the stores gonna close. In the light saw. In the people leave my employees don't change their clothes people lately. As they're proud to have you look at those people Verizon they can't wait to get those clothes. And and that that's kinda says something about who we. You mentioned earlier. Failure and dealing with getting through what's something recent that you feel like you've failed at how did you. Who. It's a great question. You know that isn't this a lot of small field I always feel like I'm not doing it now. They weren't acting in I mean I always think that I can give mall or Catholic today I will go be myself but today. I you know you hear it. It's more a little too my cure you. Didn't have enough energy here you've missed you know this point and I I don't know I'm a very critical of myself. But you don't get up and move on you know law that I I I realize have got a lot of people. Here counting on me and be on them so young self critical I don't celebrate enough. You have to enjoy the attic where you you learn that if you don't others don't get a chance to so. Think of I'm Evelyn I do know that I had 25 New Year's resolutions. Like. Check dog bit do that like five that now artistic you know one of the and it aren't you really person. I mean everything from you know I wanna take two weeks of vacation. Twice if you taken a vacation wanna go with my daughter's Hong Kong who still live there. You know you know in the normal health ones I wanna cut the rate beat out show it to him if he missed a lot of them but it. I actually sat there was one of my daughters 1130 we both got out of pad. And we made the list in. You know it's not wallow wonderful person it's it's this so many things I could do better bitten that's you know that's it's benevolent. I it's interesting you bring that up because I think a lot of batter found and the importance of having. Balance that work and give us access to the world but they also. Hold us hostage at times to not doing the things that we find valuable. To spending too much time awake too much time working and not enough time sleeping on an attack being really present yeah. How do you balance that is I don't so interest yeah but you also run this come. I don't you know I nine I'm not the poster child for balance I I've I don't have any how you sleep and. I'd go see this that's a fascinating what I'd I'd get in bed. I know I know that you can keep the schedule that I keep you getting bit not know how. You know they if it's always a full night's sleep. Yet you're putting your hand would get he had no it's it's there at night you know kinda look at it it's my alarm clock it's the last thing I do. And the you know I do all my own email. And I do love my own social so it's sometimes ragged bed it's it's two hours you know I'm I'm 400 emails behind today. Your relationship with your employees is it seems from the way that you described it much closer than what you would find a lot of CEO relationships. How do you work to inspire them besides just having the positive attitude that you have how do you in such a large company. Get buy in from every last employee and get them to really sign on to the mission. It started eight you know when I when I took over the company for years ago the more than four years ago this company was behind it was it was just. Previously. Attempted to be acquired by AT&T'S. And it was losing you know two million customers a year it was ready to be sold for parts. But the people. You know the brain was still good and the people were were ready to see an alternative. And four years ago here we had no iPhone. We were you sure it was through the roof. In the company was dying but at that time I told them that we will then it changed the whole industry. And and in you in and it's Byron where it would connect we're not just going to survive. We gonna change the entire wireless industry in the war that's wouldn't do it would gonna do it together. And everybody got on board in now you know there. The other things follow you know we've gone from thirty three's 72 million customers we've gone from dying to. You know thriving we've gone from not being a public company to be us it's. Going to be going up 50% a year. In amongst the things that I Disney gave every employee in the company what we went public stock. And then every year they can't stop. Not as a substitute for pay for the rock shareholders and they do by ownership. But I do I spend. I don't stay in my office I go specially called senate I've loved these. I think they know I'd love it. It ended it if you have any kind they went to school listen people don't dial 611. Because there. What's the worst advice you've been given your career. You know what I can remember but you know I actually work for AT&T for a long time and I was. I was a young rising exactly I was one of a small group of people those being groomed to rise up through the company and I crew member and unnamed. Chairman and CEO of AT&T the time told me. John. Do you realize if you would just stop being such a cowboy. In such a maverick. You could run this whole company. And then I ultimately left and I went Dell computer and I went on the places in the same qualities and characteristics that they were trying to snuff out in me. Was ultimately the thing that you know I think is is who I am so I remembered you if you would just stop being such cowboy. You could actually run this company and I. I remember that right here at Chet exhibit running team though I know I don't do chance. But what's the best advice and who gave it to you again I was an athlete my whole life and you know I'd I just think. Most of the good advice that I got came from coaches and high school coaches. And you know they the concept. Just. Taking what's good at making it better take what's better at making best admit it's a constant. Eatery process and it never ends and it's based on. Hard work.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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