We had the good fortune of connecting with Steven G. Foster, CMP and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Steven, what is the most important factor behind your success?
That we’ve connected everything we do, personally and professionally, to giving back in the communities where we live, work and meet. The name really says it all, Foster (to know) and Fathom (to grow), and over the years we made an ongoing commitment to helping organizations and individuals develop a leadership culture grounded in goodness. , You can’t lead without serving others and you can’t expect others to follow your leadership example without proving you have an ongoing commitment to fully doing good for, by and to those you expect to lead. That is a deeply rooted culture truth in any business or organization.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I often have the opportunity to speak to organizations on creating a “purposeful culture” and that’s a foundational lesson I learned from working for and with three of the very worst leaders and also three of the very best leaders throughout my own career journey. I don’t believe a successful organization can truly exist by separating the personal from the professional, Employees agree, as a recent survey of them on a Forbes 100 list revealed about their organizations. They said among the best companies:
- There’s a feeling you’re part of a family
- There a non-punitive attitude towards those who make mistakes
- They care with authenticity
- Everyone pulls together
- It’s very dynamic, with strong interpersonal relationships
Leadership that cares enough to support the development and growth of its people, not just with material needs but also by meeting their personal and emotional needs, creates a dynamic organization built to sustain and succeed in all kinds of situations. Providing balance, common goals, shared responsibility, open communication, commitment, integrity, and a generous, purposeful spirit results in much more than just making a list of great places to work. It makes for a Family with a purpose, and that’s unstoppable. That’s the foundation Foster+Fathom was built upon, knowing and growing a professional family.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love ending a long day on Main Street in Grapevine for food and drinks at Farina’s Winery & Cafe; great atmosphere and a bricked in patio. Anyone who comes to Texas has to sample some barbecue, so that’s a recipe to eat at Hard Eight BBQ in Coppell. So many great places to stay locally, but I would make my headquarters at The Texican Court in Irving and take in a concert at the Toyota Music Factory. Afterwards, walk over to Stumpy’s Hatchet House to sharpen my aim with some hatchet throwing! The Fort Worth Stockyards is a must-see for any visitor, as is the Sixth-Floor Exhibit in Dallas.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
LOVE this approach! From a personal perspective, I’m deeply grateful for the love and support of my Mother, Carole Foster. I didn’t fully see, understand, or even appreciate the sacrifices she made for my brothers and sister as a working, single Mom. Today, as a father of two, I most certainly do. And to my wife and business partner, Wendy Foster, who has been my constant guide and champion for 30 years, I know EVERYTHING good in life begins and ends with her. From a purposeful perspective, I have been guided by the example of five women from Texas, who we refer to as the Original Boot Girls, who have shown a nation that everyone can do something to make a difference. Their singular efforts led to the creation of an amazing veterans service organization – The Boot Campaign (www.bootcampiagn.com) and it’s been an honor to serve Veterans, Gold Star Families and Active-Duty Members of the U.S. Military alongside them. And on the career front, two gentlemen who made a lasting imprint on who I am today, Col. Edwin C. “Ned” Humphreys, JR. USAF, Retired (1938-1969) who I met in 1978 when he was publisher and editor of a small weekly newspaper in Mobile, Alabama. He gave an arrogant and unprepared young man a job opportunity I was woefully unprepared for and in doing so, taught me life lessons in asking for help, owning your mistakes and putting in the work. And to Cavett Robert, a long-time finally friend and mentor who told me at an early age one day I would be a professional speaker. I resisted emphatically, but he always encouraged me. Cavett founded the National Speakers Association (NSA) and although he didn’t live to see it, I landed happily in exactly the professional place he knew I would.
Photos by Foster+Fathom