A few years ago I accepted a position as chief operating officer (COO) for a small business that was owned and operated by a father and son team. I was a little apprehensive about taking a direct position with the business because I had been working as an independent consultant for quite a while. I went through the entire interview process before I finally met the father who was the CEO.

When I was introduced to the father, he asked me a couple of questions and eventually asked if there was anything I wanted to ask of them. I had only one question: “How honest are you guys?” I suspected that the question had caught him off guard. He thought about it for a couple of seconds and responded by saying he felt they were very honest. He also ...

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