BBA '80; managing director at McGladrey
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
For both my children and me, that we have found meaningful careers that we are engaged in and are always learning from.
What is your greatest fear?
That the country loses control over its destiny, from an unwillingness to face reality and take responsibility.
Which talent would you most like to have?
To have musical talent, not for fame, but to enjoy with friends.
Who are your heroes in real life?
Entrepreneurs who can have a setback and then get right back up and try again; a leader who can acknowledge that the other side has legitimate interests and creates room for compromise.
What qualities do you most admire in business professionals?
Leaders who understand their weaknesses and compensate for them by sharing responsibility and letting others look good; people who ask questions and listen.
Which qualities do you dislike?
People who are selling within five minutes of meeting you. Stringing a job candidate along or being nonresponsive after the initial contact—a fast "no" is much better than silence or being ignored.
What is the best advice you could offer to young women and men as they start their careers?
Start networking as early as you can, but only do so with groups, people, or nonprofits that you have a real interest in and in which you will be an active participant.
Your top three networking tips?
- Get to know the other person first; do not attempt to immediately sell something to the other person.
- Suggest a trade group that you network in that would also be meaningful to the other person.
- After you meet, e-mail a brief recap of any followup commitments that each of you made when you met, and do your followup promptly.
Connect with Bill on LinkedIn.