Stanley Bergman wins Perlmutter Award for excellence in global leadershipPublished: April 26, 2013
Stanley Bergman, chairman and CEO of Henry Schein, Inc., was awarded the 2013 Perlmutter Award for Excellence in Global Business Leadership on Tuesday. Since 1989, Bergman has been chairman and CEO of Henry Schein, Inc., a Fortune 500 company and the world’s largest provider of dental, medical and veterinary products and services to more than 200 countries and regions around the world.
The Perlmutter Award is sponsored by trustees Louis Perlmutter ’56 and Barbara Perlmutter, who also established the Perlmutter Institute for Global Business Leadership as part of the Brandeis International Business School. The Perlmutter Institute teaches students to value the intersection of global business leadership with promoting the public good.
Bergman was presented the Perlmutter Award at a luncheon reception by Louis Perlmutter, a long-time family friend, and was welcomed by President Fred Lawrence and Dean Bruce Magid.
“Henry founded the company in 1932 in the middle of the Great Depression. He was an amazing entrepreneur. Today we are the largest provider for dental, medical and veterinary practitioners in the private practice, and we have a great customer base,” Bergman said.
Bergman continued to explain how Henry Schein, Inc. teaches newly certified health care practitioners how to run small businesses, and helps its customers to work through practice management challenges.
“Health care practitioners spend a lot of money getting their education. Our customers get a good clinical education, but no one has taught them how to run a small business,” Bergman said.
“We educate them in the methodology, and we provide them with practice management services. Our customers need these products, and we have been able to help them go into private practice and provide good clinical care. That is our formula and it has worked well.”
Social responsibility has always been an important component of a successful business for Bergman, who enjoys getting to know people from around the world, and bettering the environment through the development of Henry Schein, Inc.
“I have always had a passion for social responsibility. Our company’s culture allows for the business side to excel, and the opportunity for our team members to participate in programs that make a difference in society,” Bergman said.
After graduating from college, Bergman “did something very boring,” and became an accountant for four years. According to Bergman, by becoming an accountant he was able to learn the language of business, and later combined his knowledge of business with his passion for social responsibility.
Bergman encouraged seniors graduating into business fields to enjoy working with people above all, and stressed the importance of giving back to society.
“We are a business that competes with competition that provides exactly the same products we do. We are three times bigger than any of them. It’s all about people. Work with people, enjoy people,” Bergman said. “There are a number of constituents that make up what we call the Henry Schein Mosaic of Success. That is, our clients, our customers, our team, our investors and giving back to society through social responsibility. Any graduate should seek out organizations and lifestyles that allow for the balancing of constituents, and focus on giving back to society.”
According to Bergman, one of the most exciting parts of business is the digitalization of dentistry that prevents the use of a harmful x-ray developing solution and employs environmentally friendly digital technology instead.
“When I started out at Henry Schein 33 years ago, there weren’t even computers available at a dentist’s office. Now you can have a digital x-ray made that is sent straight to the dentist’s computer,” Bergman said.
Beyond receiving the Perlmutter Award Tuesday, Bergman does not have an extensive relationship with Brandeis.
“We are friends with the Perlmutters. Their eldest son Eric is a partner in business with our youngest son Eddie. Lou founded the Perlmutter Institute for Global Business Leadership, and asked me to spend the day today. The students were so engaging, and they have a great appreciation for business and social values.” Bergman said.
Bergman concluded by remarking that his favorite part of business has always been the people he meets.
“People. I love people. Being chairman and CEO allows me to meet people from every walk of life. From business, to academia, to government, to NGOs in every country in the world. I just love people. They excite me and get me going every morning. I don’t work, I have fun!”