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Advice

On Topic: DFW Business Leaders Share The Best Business Advice They Received

From picking a boss over a job to being courageous about speaking up, executives with T-Mobile, EY, and Vistra Corp. share some sage advice.
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Illustrations by Jake Meyers

When building our careers, sometimes our first instinct isn’t the best course. Maybe we think about the job more than the people who will be leading us. Other times we may want to be conservative and not take risks. Or perhaps we want to zoom up the corporate ladder at all costs.

It takes experience to learn that our first thought isn’t always our best one. We all need a mentor who can be trusted to give us the advice we need to hear rather than what we want to hear. For me, a grad school professor who told me to focus on being a lifelong learner and not taking myself too seriously have served me well.

For D CEO’s April issue, we asked three business executives to share the best business advice they have ever received. Here’s what they told us.

Chris Luna

Vice President of Legal Affairs, T-Mobile US

“After law school, I clerked for Chief Judge Robert McGuire with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. As my year was coming to an end, and I started looking at law firms to join, he advised me to choose a boss—a trusted, respected, mentor—not a job. Since then, I have used the same advice to advance my career, even with internal moves. And as I’ve gotten older, I have tried to become the kind of boss that folks would also want to choose.”

Thear Suzuki

Global Client Service Partner, EY

“About five years into my career, while at a technical vendor bake-off, a mentor nudged me to ask a question. I resisted, but the mentor persisted. I managed the courage to speak up and afterward received compliments from colleagues. That experience was a turning point for me. I made a personal commitment to pay attention, engage, ask questions, or make meaningful comments whether in a meeting of five people or 5,000.”

Curt Morgan

CEO, Vistra Corp.

“Early in my career, one of my bosses told me, ‘Play your career like you have less than a handful of chips, and you must play them judiciously.’ That advice has served me well, and I pass it along to others. We all want to progress at a fast pace, but sometimes pushing our own agenda can work against us. A wiser course is to be patient, gain experience and knowledge, and pick your opportunities in a prudent and timely manner.”

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