Photography by Gene Smirnov

Ask a lot of questions and then listen, listen, listen.

As my previous career was that of a commodities floor trader where yelling over someone was a means to success, listening was not a practice I abided by when I entered the employee benefits business. Whether it was remnant of my previous career or having to show whoever was in the room that I knew everything (which I didn’t), my lack of listening in the early days of my professional development was a trait that I needed to overcome.

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