Truth Seeking. Truth Telling.

I attended a delightful dinner party co-hosted by a highly experienced consumer market researcher. Listening to him was a mini master class in truth seeking and truth telling.

No shrinking violet, Bob built his reputation on listening to everyday consumers and asking tough questions, unswayed by client or agency opinion. Being real and challenging conventional thinking are core elements of his DNA.

Which got me thinking. Are truth seeking and truth telling given adequate attention in the advisory professions?

Attorneys, consultants, wealth advisors—most of us start professional careers because we enjoy digging for the truth and figuring out how best to deliver it. Not because we have to be right—although we do love when that happens. But because telling clients what they need to hear is the right thing to do. And in the end, that’s really what matters.

What do you think? Are we doing enough truth seeking and truth telling?


  • Richard

    And his chicken pot pie is pretty honest, too! Not to mention his chocolate sauce!

  • I started my career in advertising about 30 years ago at McCann Erickson. Their slogan back then was TRUTH WELL TOLD. (I am not sure if it still is.) As relevant today, as it ever was. It is a bar not easily reached; but when it is, magic happens.

  • Rosy

    I have seen in my career people get ahead by being dishonest. But I also believe Truth always prevail in the end.

  • Richard, Jeff and Rosy:
    Thanks for sharing! So, truth (and chicken pot pie) are as relevant and compelling as ever. Sometimes the key is in getting the simplest things exactly right….

  • Rochelle, thanks for writing about a very important topic. Those of us in the professional services business constantly need to strive to speak truth to power. It’s not always easy though, especially for people whose first instinct is to please others. In the Strategic Communication Action Group that I conduct, which helps participants gain the confidence, courage and capabilities to become trusted advisors, we work on learning how to speak truth to power. We start by assessing our communication style and go from there. Even those of us who are more direct find that we’re more comfortable speaking up on certain issues, but not always everything. However, if we’re to be trusted advisors, we must provide this service. I’m driven to do this and help others do so as well.

  • Liz,
    This is terribly important work and I’m glad you’re out there doing it. We can all use more practice speaking “truth to power”….

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