meseke

All articles by meseke

 

Clint Bruce on Catalysts, Conviction & Curiosity

It’s difficult not to be inspired after spending time with Clint Bruce. Bruce, a decorated Naval Academy graduate, former Navy SEAL and NFL linebacker, is the founder and president of TRG, a global intelligence and advisory group headquartered in Dallas, Texas. Bruce strives to be “somewhere on the map between excellent and elite” in all he does. He was a 4 year letterwinner and captain of the most successful Naval Academy football team of the
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Invest in Friendships

At Credera, the principle of genuine friendship is woven into the fabric of our firm’s culture. We believe it is our job to help our friends. This includes our clients, our colleagues and people in our community. “When you forget about trying to sell something to someone and instead just try to help them, you actually provide much deeper value,” says Trent Sutton, Vice President, Credera. Credera creates natural pathways for employees to build strong
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DEFENDERS Grows Leaders With Intention

Founded in 1998, DEFENDERS (formerly DEFENDER Direct) began as a one-man-show run out of Dave Lindsey’s extra bedroom. Today, it is the largest authorized dealer for ADT Home Security systems in the United States with nearly 2,000 employees. We spoke with Dave Lindsey, Chairman and Founder, of DEFENDERS, to find out how he developed DEFENDERS’ positive, generous culture. Maintaining a positive culture in an organization with a large sales force is a challenge.  We were
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Clients Are Friends

The idea that “it’s all about relationships” is something that extends past the four walls of our Credera offices. Not only do we believe it is critical to build strong relationships within our firm, we also believe it is imperative to pursue great friendships with our clients and prospective clients. Earlier this year I had the privilege of teaching the business development (BD) section of the onboarding course to our newly hired college graduates.  The
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When Iron Sharpens Iron—Sparks Fly (And That’s Okay)

Conflict is something people tend to avoid at all costs. It’s uncomfortable and difficult. It’s takes time to resolve and typically feels counter-productive. The truth is, we cannot run from conflict. It’s inevitable. In a recent blog post, Matt Levy wrote, “Conflict has nearly torn our company apart. Learning to embrace it has made us the company we are today.” Conflict may be uncomfortable, but it is not always bad. When handled in a healthy way,
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Freeman’s Vice Chairman on Core Values, Change, and Conflict Management

Just a few days after Freeman’s annual leadership summit, Credera’s Matt Levy and I met with Carrie Freeman Parsons, vice chair of The Freeman Company. This year, a significant portion of their two-and-a-half-day summit focused on discussing Freeman’s core values.  Parsons’ leadership team works diligently to align behaviors and measurement against those values. The meetings were “the catalyst for us to more effectively operationalize our values and culture,” says Parsons. Parsons was excited to share
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True Leadership Is Servant Leadership

The definition of leadership has little to do with authority, power, or control. Instead it is about investing in others, leading by example, and putting the needs of others above your own. At Credera, leadership is not defined by a title or position. Regardless of their level, we expect every employee—from administrator to partner—to lead well.  That means serving one another, our clients, and our community with humility, integrity, and excellence. We intentionally hire and
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Mentorship: Two Are Better Than One

Mentorship is an important part of any company’s culture. It plays a key role in fostering meaningful relationships within your firm that will develop, fulfill and ultimately retain top talent. A recent Forbes article by John Kotter said it this way: “The value of a mentor who can help cultivate leadership skills one-on-one in real-time, reduce the anxiety in taking big steps, and focus leaders on achieving their goals – is huge.” Mentorship has played a
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Credera’s CEO on Building a Family-Like Culture

Despite his busy schedule, Rob Borrego, president and CEO of Credera, was quick to make time to discuss Credera’s culture. I know from my own personal experience that Borrego’s prioritization of the firm’s people and culture is intentional and consistent. As an employee of the firm for the past two years, I believe my personal experience “on the inside” makes me uniquely qualified to tell this story— and I wouldn’t tell it if I didn’t
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EnLink Gives ‘More Life’ to Employees

The EnLink Midstream family lives at the corner of Cedar Springs and Fairmount in Dallas. EnLink’s home is humble enough: seven stories of concrete and glass, with windows wrapping the building on each floor, offering the entire office a 360-degree view of life in Uptown Dallas. It’s a beautiful urban scene – but it’s the relationships created within that make the headquarters a home. “We are constantly reminded that everything good we’ve ever done came
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Generosity Is Contagious

Generous people are my favorite people to work with. They tend to be others-focused and make great servant leaders. They are often the most patient and helpful of teammates. My co-worker Sarah is always busy. She juggles several important internal responsibilities and has a seemingly never-ending and lengthy to-do list. Despite her workload, she is eager to help when someone stops by her office. Rather than moving them along quickly, she is generous with her
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Aaron Graft, CEO, Triumph Bancorp Inc. on Investing in Culture

A purposefully crafted list of company values shines proudly as the centerpiece in Triumph Bancorp, Inc.’s office lobby. Rather than lifeless, framed words hanging on a wall, Triumph’s values came to life as we walked past all-glass conference rooms and smiling faces to meet with Triumph’s founder and Chief Executive Officer, Aaron Graft. Triumph is a financial holding company with interests in community banking, commercial finance, and asset management. With the acquisition of several subsidiaries, Triumph has
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Forging Unity

Successful leadership requires unity. When leaders are united, the results are amazing, but this doesn’t happen without hard work. Unity is developed over time by demonstrating consistent trustworthy behavior. When roadblocks arise that threaten the unity of a team, it is critical to address the issues. We’ve learned this lesson countless times. It is much easier to maintain unity when we do not allow conflict to fester or issues to build up. We must be
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Friendships At Work

At the office, I have the privilege of sitting next to a great friend of mine. Jennifer Spaulding is my “cube-mate,” my counterpart on the marketing team, and a great mentor. I did not know her before I started my career at Credera but over the past year (and after countless soy chai lattes) we have developed a great friendship. Because we are advocates for each other in both our professional and personal lives, I
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Transparency Is the Best Policy

Mark Twain is quoted as saying, “Trust arrives on foot, but leaves on horseback.” Trust takes time to earn, but can be lost in an instant. At Credera, we desire to build strong, high-trust relationships with our clients and co-workers. Over time, we’ve learned transparency, honesty, and consistency are the foundation of trust in any relationship. While transparency is not an official core value at Credera, it certainly drives the way we do business and
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