It’s time to rethink everything we know about trust, change and leadership

Today there is no greater need than building trustworthy organizations. Trust is a sacred bond between leadership, institutions, customers and employees.

In times of change and uncertainty, low trust inhibits growth and progress.  We believe the only way to address the deficit in trustworthiness is through authenticity.

Truly being authentic is knowing what matters to you, acting on your values, and committing to act from that authentic centre.

Now, more than ever before, leaders must embrace authenticity and understand the consequences and impact of their words and actions.


How one arrives at the destination of Chief Executive Officer is as varied as the tapestry of human diversity. No two paths are the same and no two leaders conform to the same mold.

At no time in modern history has the definition and manifestation of leadership been so vigorously assaulted by a vast array of critics that fuel a passionate debate on the merits and responsibilities of leadership in the 21st century.

The consequence of discourse is creating a wobbly foundation, confounding for an aspirant and bewildering to the those who lead.

Why all the scrutiny and why the urgency?

We have entered into a modern age of enlightenment, spawned by the universal access to shared content via social media and the permission and courage to invite conversations deemed taboo from decades of indifference and silence.

The belief that leadership wears the armor of omnipotent and omniscient power, rendering their authority as infallible is no longer credible. The parade of defrocked leaders in a vast profile of industries, nationalities, and institutions across age, gender and ethnicity defines the magnitude of the challenge leadership faces under heightened public scrutiny.

“Now more than ever, the definition and therefore the consequences of leadership behavior and narrative must be re-examined as a central tenet of an organization’s strategy for growth and prosperity.”

We have two questions for you:

How are you defining and managing your legacy?

Your CEO legacy is the undisputed record of your leadership.  It is the autobiography of a life well spent in service of others.  It is the lore by which one’s contribution endures the passage of time and the frailty of memory. It is the sum total of all that defines, determines and directs the actions one takes to build a career.

Legacy is not the admiration of a moment in time but an assessment of progress and achievement over the period of decades.  The authorship of legacy starts with your first pay stub, not your last check.   Legacy is by definition all experiences, all knowledge and all consequences of human behavior that influence and alter the landscape of an organization, a team and/or an individual.

If we accept that others learn by observing the leader, then leaders have both a responsibility and an accountability to role model the positive values we need so desperately in today’s world of half-truths and fake news.

What is the purpose of your organization?

Recent economic crises and the increasing number of Millennials entering adulthood have put a spotlight on the role and impact of organizations in society.

In a marketplace of total information, heritage and history will become less meaningful drivers of choice. Customers are increasingly embracing brands that deliver against their present needs over brands that are constrained by past identities.

The flaw of many initiatives is an inability to translate ideas into actions. We observe that relevant demonstrations of how values link to behaviors is accidental more often than not. Intentionality needs to be introduced at all levels of organizations—from the CEO to the newest recruit. Your workforce is the first defense of truth, and employee advocacy is a powerful weapon to validate commitment, defend the purpose, and build trust.

Your purpose is an opportunity to build and reinforce trust. However, it must be authentic, relevant, ownable and credible.


What we believe 

We believe that the world is moving too quickly to allow the past to dictate the future.  The difference between sage counsel and “rinse and repeat” consulting lies in the locus of your world view and how you define value.

Our perspective is measured in decades, and our ambition is to influence without hesitation.

We blend our deep experience in brand strategy and change with the legitimacy of scientific thinking to help CEOs adapt, grow and prepare their businesses for what’s next.

With the turbulence in our world, what worked in the past doesn’t serve us today

Many consulting models leverage outdated, biased frameworks steeped in the irrelevancy of old models, violating originality.

We believe:

  • That clients deserve unbiased counsel, void of bullshit.
  • That accountability is a two-way street, where both of us share equal measures of responsibility and investment.
  • That ideas are the currency for change, and that legitimate insights are borne by the marriage of art and science.
  • In a flexible, adaptive approach to consulting, one that avoids jargon filled tomes, which soil pristine truth, and rigid constructs that impede organizations to adapt, thrive and grow.

Our work begins and ends with our authenticity, and yours.

An invitation

If you have a challenge or question that we can help with, please reach out to us through phone, email or LinkedIn. 

There’s nothing we enjoy more than healthy dialogue. Our team is always up for a (virtual) coffee, tea or cold beverage.

With gratitude,

Carolyn Ray:
Tom Zara: