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Empowered: Unleash Your Employees, Energize Your Customers, and Transform Your Business by Ted Schadler, Josh Bernoff

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11. helping HEROes collaborate

BBVA is exactly the kind of company that needs collaboration most.

Starting as Banco de Bilbao in 1857, BBVA grew into a global financial powerhouse, the second-largest bank based in Spain, with over one hundred ten thousand employees in thirty countries and 47 million customers. Global financial companies aren’t known for being nimble; they’re known for the internal communication challenges they face.

But BBVA has made collaboration and innovation priorities. When I (Josh) visited the company in 2008 and 2009, I spoke to large and engaged groups of executives in a modern technology center, housed within a renovated old building called the Centro de Innovación, or Innovation Center. The “new within the old” model ...

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