Leadership is about embracing the process of unlearning outdated practices, fostering a culture of continuous improvement, and aligning your team with visionary goals. Today’s guest, with his esteemed 29-year tenure at one of the largest asset managers in the world, Vanguard, shares how he successfully navigated this journey.

John T. Marcante is a renowned technology and business executive with expertise in digital transformation, business strategy, financial planning, and cybersecurity. He is the US CIO in Residence at Deloitte, providing strategic guidance to clients and leadership.

Previously, John was the Global CIO at Vanguard, where he led digital transformation and drove growth to $9 trillion. He modernized Vanguard’s technology and promoted an inclusive workplace. He also developed Vanguard’s global advice platform, making financial planning accessible to millions.



John has contributed to the WSJ CIO Journal and Harvard Business Review. His awards include Business Insider Top 50 CIOs and ORBIE CIO of the Year. He holds degrees from The Pennsylvania State University and Saint Joseph’s University.

Host Barry O’Reilly invites John to share his journey at Vanguard and beyond in leadership, culture transformation, and gratitude. Inspired by his father’s legacy in technology, John discusses how he aligned tech with business goals at Vanguard. Barry highlights John’s approach to direct client engagement and open feedback. They also explore John’s commitment to servant leadership, maintaining company values, and his future goals of mentoring new leaders and giving back to the community. This episode offers personal insights into what drives effective leadership with gratitude.

Key Takeaways:

  • Leadership and Transformation: Transformations should align technology initiatives with business goals, led by C-suite executives.
  • Servant Leadership: Building a culture of servant leadership is crucial for successful transformations.
  • Client Engagement: Direct client feedback, really listening and a take-action approach are essential for quick and effective improvements.
  • Maintaining Values: Sticking to core values and supporting clients and employees ensures long-term success and engagement.
  • Future Aspirations: Coaching future leaders, staying engaged in technology, and giving back to the community are key aspects of making a positive impact.

Additional Insights:

  • Personal Influences on Leadership: John’s father played a crucial role in sparking his interest in technology and instilling values of gratitude and support.
  • Handling Client and Employee Relations: Prioritizing core values and employee well-being, even when making tough decisions like firing abusive high-net-worth clients, ensures long-term success.
  • Learning from Mistakes and Building Trust: Creating an environment of trust and open communication allows employees to voice opinions and make mistakes, fostering innovation and continuous improvement.