Over the past year, I’ve offered an insider view into the challenges, successes, and make-it-or-break-it moments of seven men and women who are making their mark by leading with trust—every day. In case you missed any of them, or want a fresh dose of practical advice (not to mention inspiration), here’s a recap.

  • “We don’t hide anything, good or bad.” Find out how Ron Prater helped his government consulting firm recover from a major client loss by being totally transparent with employees.
  • “I asked him what would make him feel like we addressed the situation to his satisfaction.” Learn how Chip Grizzard’s nonprofit marketing and fundraising agency retained a long-term client even after mistiming their direct mail campaign.
  • “You don’t have to have the answer, and you definitely don’t have to be the smartest one in the room.” Meet Ralph Catillo, an Account Executive at a large benefits company, who encourages staff to be comfortable in the zone of not knowing.
  • “I have never had someone say, ‘I wish you hadn’t told me that.’” Find out how Anna Dutton, Sales Operations Director, finds the courage at her educational tech company to be genuine, tell the truth, and say things that others might not agree with.
  • “My life philosophy is there’s plenty of everything—customers, money, everything.” Take a tip from entrepreneur and former bed and breakfast owner John Dunn on collaboration…and learn how he joined forces with other B&Bs.
  • “I just had to lay it on the table. I said, ‘If you want to make me feel like sh** and perspire every time I talk to you, then you’re on target. But here’s the thing: I think I can learn from you.’” Get the whole story of how Heber Sambucetti, a senior learning consultant, turned a negative relationship with a senior executive around by being real.
  • “If you have a client who leads with social connection, then that’s where you need to put your foot out first. If someone is results-oriented, they might not want to chat—they want to know what we did for them today.” See how Janet Andrews, a senior level consultant, uses low self-interest to attune herself to her clients’ needs.

The themes across these stories: transparency, humility, courage, and true customer focus.

Many thanks, once again, to these magnificent role models.

Originally published by Trusted Advisor Associates.
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Andrea Howe

As the founder of The Get Real Project, I am the steward of our vision and our service offerings, as well as a workshop leader and keynote speaker. Above all else, I am an entrepreneur on a mission: to kick conventional business wisdom to the curb and transform how people work together as a result. I am also the co-author, with Charles H. Green, of The Trusted Advisor Fieldbook (Wiley, 2012).