Episode 81 | From the Back of an Ambulance to the Top of His Industry – How Simon Cohen Transformed Henco with Happiness

 with Henco CEO Simon Cohen

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AWE Episode graphic Simon Cohen

Simon Cohen’s doctors thought it was a heart attack.

Back in 2006, the self-professed workaholic was on a business trip in China on behalf of Henco, the global logistics company he founded in Mexico at the age of 24.

But not everything was going well. Simon could barely eat, and only slept a few hours at a time. He spent his days meeting with his partners in Hong Kong, and stayed up all night working with the team back in Mexico.

On the last day of the trip, he felt a jolt of pain in his chest – so powerful that it knocked him off his chair at dinner. The next thing he knew, the 32 year old former Olympic-level swimmer found himself in the back of an ambulance racing to the hospital.

The experience was nothing short of life changing. As a high level athlete, Simon had taken his good health as a given. As it turned out, he had a rare heart condition called Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW), and the intense stress of running Henco was threatening his wellbeing.

After taking some time to recover, Simon decided he had to make a change – and the results speak for themselves. Henco, a company in a notoriously stressful industry, has been named the sixth place to work in Mexico, and the number one logistics company to work for in Mexico six years in a row. 

Simon told us how he achieved this amazing turnaround, as well as what he means when he says his goal is to treat his employees like “human humans.”

Key Takeaways

  • Simon explains why the key to creating high performing companies is happy people. 4:59
  • How Simon and his team have made Henco the 6th best place to work in all of Mexico, and the best place to work in the logistics industry six years in a row. 6:36
  • Why Simon thinks it’s important to make his employees feel like owners. 7:25
  • Simon explains what he means when he says it’s important to make people feel like “human humans.” 9:05
  • What’s different about catering your culture to Millennials, and why it’s important to do so. 12:00
  • How people who don’t have Simon’s mindset can embrace Henco’s management principles for their benefit. 12:42
  • Why there’s still stress at Henco, despite the high level of happiness and satisfaction. 14:22
  • Simon describes the moment that changed everything for him, and inspired him to make happiness a priority in life and business. 16:03
  • Why Simon decided to stop taking the pills to treat his stress and anxiety, and decided to change his lifestyle instead. 21:30
  • Why happiness is Henco’s number one competitive advantage. 24:34
  • Simon’s formula for a great relationship. 26:18
  • Simon on the importance of giving, and how it can be a multiplier for value. 31:46
  • Simon shares his biggest struggle today at Henco, and why happiness is like a muscle. 32:45


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