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If there is one CEO in the cellular industry who has Wall Street heads turning, Jim Cramer thinks it is T-Mobile CEO John Legere.
"You might think that in a company with tens of thousands of workers, one individual, even if he is the top guy, just can't make much of a difference. I'm telling you that view is dead wrong," the "Mad Money" host said.
Cramer has been following T-Mobile CEO John Legere, as he launched what Cramer describes as a one-man guerrilla war against the rest of the industry. He has done so by creating a mobile company that provides transparency with no long-term contracts, cheaper prices and better competition.
And based on the strong quarter reported by T-Mobile on Tuesday morning, these tactics are working; it confirmed that it added 1.8 million customers. The "Mad Money" host thinks the stock would have been up even higher on Tuesday, if it weren't for the fact that T-Mobile has been spending so much to build out its network to compete more aggressively in the future.
Cramer spoke with John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile, on how his honest leadership style has helped the company trigger growth, including the introduction of "uncarrier" services. This eliminated the need for two-year contracts and overage charges; T-Mobile will even pay up to $650 per line to end a contract with a customer's current carrier.
"I took the company over two and a half years ago. The fascinating thing about the growth of the company is we've gone, from the end of 2012, from 33 million customers to 57 million," Legere said.
And while T-Mobile did do an acquisition during that time, Legere confirmed that the acquisition only accounted for 8.9 million customers. Thus, the majority of increase has been organic growth for the company.
When Legere took over the company, he openly described himself as someone who needed "wireless for dummies." However, he touted that as a strength. He spent a significant amount of time listening to both sides of a customer service calls, interacting with users on social media, going into stores and listening to customers and employees.
"My business philosophy is listen to your employees, listen to your customers. Shut up and do what they tell you. And each of our uncarrier moves and the way I run my company is completely aligned with that," the CEO added.
Legere said that he thinks the style of honest leadership is one that many CEOs today are getting pressure from customers to emulate.
"Right now, I think CEOs in general are getting pressured from their people and customers to be more open, to be more honest, be less of a suit, be more attached to your customers and employees and lead us, motivate us, show us the finish line," he said.
In fact, Legere noted that he personally swears like a sailor, which is something that a CEO typically can't do. But his style has resonated with both customers and social media. Why is he willing to speak like this?
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"I am at the stage in my career and life, where I am who I am. I am who my customers are," Legere added.
Legere's strategy has been to embody his brand, as was evidenced by his magenta sneakers with "TMobile CEO" embroidered on the side. His goal is to be a walking brand for the company, and to have people ask why he loves his company so much. He thinks it is contagious, that people will want to be a part of it.
"From the day I got here, Jim, I just told my people, here's where we are going," Legere said. "You don't get it. We're going to win big, and we're going to do it by focusing on customers."