The Harden Way

The Harden Way

For more than half a century, we’ve been supporting unique client objectives, promoting long-term relationships, and enabling our associates to realize their potential. Our strong company culture supports the pursuit of our mission. These fundamentals describe the behaviors that define our culture and enable our success. We call it: The Harden Way.



Honesty is the best policy, no matter the consequences. If you make a mistake, accept responsibility, apologize, and make it right.

Take pride in the quality of everything you do, including your preparation, your work product, your communications, your appearance, and the appearance of our work environment. Have a healthy disdain for mediocrity. Always ask yourself, “Is this my best work?”

Aspire to distinguish every interaction by exceeding expectations in terms of your attitude, responsiveness, and results delivered.

Be disciplined about aligning with prospects’ and clients’ enterprise objectives and collaborate to build plans to support them. Diligent adherence to our process is central to delivering predictable results.

Listen to gain understanding, rather than to reply. Be present and engaged. Gain clarity on others’ perspective. Suspend your judgment and demonstrate intellectual curiosity, rather than jumping to conclusions. Dig deeper and get beneath the surface.

Create clarity and avoid misunderstandings by discussing expectations upfront. Reach agreement on goals, priorities, accountabilities, and timelines with clients, colleagues, and other stakeholders.

Make serving the client’s interest the basis for all decisions. Provide relevant knowledge that facilitates informed decisions and reduces uncertainty.

Do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it. If a commitment can’t be fulfilled, notify others early and agree on a new timeframe to be honored.

Respond to expectations timely and accurately. Acknowledge and confirm your understanding of the issue and the required response. Keep everyone informed appropriately.

Focus on developing solutions and opportunities, rather than assigning blame. Identify lessons learned and use those lessons to improve ourselves and our processes.

Have the courage of your convictions to share your perspective. Speak honestly and be willing to challenge in a respectful and productive way. It’s your prerogative and obligation to address issues directly with those who are involved or affected.

Work together to find better solutions. With appropriate respect for confidentiality, share information freely throughout the organization. Learn to ask yourself, “Who else needs to know this?”

While we appreciate effort, we reward and celebrate results. Find a way to get to “yes” rather than accepting the first “no.” Persevere to ensure that tasks are completed and results are achieved. Take initiative to make it happen!

Make decisions that enhance long-term relationships with all stakeholders. Strong relationships enable us to more successfully work through difficult issues and challenging times.

Be a fanatic about accuracy and precision. The goal is to get things right, not simply to get them done. Do it right the first time.

Know your audience and consider their perspective. Write and speak in a way that they can understand. Avoid using internal lingo or industry jargon. Use the simplest possible explanations.

Be open to learning from others, no matter what role they have, and regardless of their age, industry, experience, or tenure with the company. We make better decisions when we consider everyone’s perspective.

Be vigilant about seeking new and better ways to enhance our value proposition. Complacency is our enemy. The best solution is sometimes the “path least traveled.”

Consider how your actions impact your teammates. Be there for each other and be willing to step into another role or help a colleague when that’s what’s required for success. Be loyal to our team.

Organize, prioritize, and plan your work for maximum effectiveness. Do the research necessary to be prepared for all engagements. Optimize technology and systems to achieve more and better results. Be proactive, rather than reactive.

Take responsibility to develop your skills and increase your value. Seek opportunities to realize your potential.

You have the power to choose your attitude. Choose to be optimistic and enthusiastic about what you do. Inspire others to see the best in every situation. Positive energy is contagious.

Change provides us with unique opportunities for competitive advantage and facilitates growth. We must adapt to an everchanging environment to remain relevant. Embrace the new possibilities that change brings.

Consider our mission when making decisions. “Will this support the client’s objectives, build long-term relationships, and facilitate associate potential? Is this a good use of resources? How am I supporting our stakeholders? Will my actions enhance our reputation?”

Celebrate success. Recognizing people doing things right is more effective than pointing out when they do things wrong. Regularly extend meaningful acknowledgment and appreciation — in all directions throughout our organization.

Seek opportunities to serve clients, colleagues, and our communities. Demonstrate servant leadership.

While our ambition for excellence is real, remember that the world has bigger problems than the daily challenges that make up our work. Keep perspective. Don’t take things personally or take yourself too seriously. Enjoy the journey.