Most Influential Women Q&A: Trisha Renner, Baird

Describe a recent challenge you overcame.

Personally, I think every day brings a new challenge and a new opportunity. As I think about my career, the biggest career challenge has been finding my personal communication style. Not everyone appreciates direct. Developing an effective style takes time, working with mentors and listening to others.

How do you support women?

Early in my career, after a long day of travel, our CEO and I decided it was time to put some real dollars and time behind encouraging more women to enter the financial services and banking, in particular. That original effort turned into fellowships with some of the leading business schools and a diversity committee, that today, has morphed into a very popular Women’s Associate Resource Group. This is a tough career but I am proud of the effort both Baird and I put into recruiting more women into the field.

What is your advice for women?

Be yourself and find something you like to talk about with every client. Talking sports is fine but if that is not your thing find something else that resonates.