Straight talk

A few years ago, when Mark Edmunds took the reins as vice chairman and managing partner for Deloitte LLP’s Northern Pacific region, he stood before all 4,000 of his employees with a single message for what they could expect of him.

“I wanted them to know that every day when I come to work, I’m going to focus on building trust,” Edmunds says. “Trust — when you think about it — it’s easy to say and it’s hard to earn. I told them that trust is the foundation of everything we do at Deloitte. If you build trust with your colleagues, you actually deliver better service to your clients.”

Over the last few years, Edmunds has lived out that mission of establishing trust by leading with a mindset that everyone matters, being straight with people and always listening.

“It’s all about living what you say, and it’s all about the actions that you take,” he says. “It’s providing leadership on it, so I really try to earn my colleagues’ trust every day when I come in.”

Here are some of the things Edmunds has learned about leadership through the years.