How She Does It: Krissi Barr, CEO of Barr Corporate Success

Female Entrepreneur Krissi Barr CEO of Barr Corporate Success
Krissi Barr is CEO of Barr Corporate Success, consultants specializing in strategic planning, executive coaching, and behavioral assessments, and the co-author of The Fido Factor: How to Get a Leg Up at Work.

Deb Bailey: Welcome to the Secrets of Success blog, Krissi. How did you get started as an entrepreneur?

Krissi Barr: Great to be here, Deborah. I started my consulting company 15 years ago and have never looked back. My husband (and co-author of our books) encouraged me to hang up my own shingle, and it was the best advice I've ever received.

I had worked for a start-up family business, large public company and several small to medium sized companies in a variety of industries. I had seen how well run companies operate and had spent a lot of time seeing how poorly run companies do things. I knew I could help people and organizations because I knew both what they were experiencing and how to turn things around.

Deb: Are there any "lessons learned" that you'd like to share?

Krissi: This question is at the core of why my husband and I have written two business books. We based the latest book, The Fido Factor: How to Get a Leg Up at Work, on dogs because it's different and relatable for most people. Leadership is so critical to success. With great leadership almost anything is possible. Without it, organizations can almost never succeed. The four canine-derived leadership takeaways in The Fido Factor are that leaders have to be faithful, inspirational, determined and observant.

  • Faithful leaders earn the trust of their team and their customers by doing the right things and living up to their word.
  • Inspirational leaders move people to do the meaningful and the extraordinary.
  • Determined leaders combine perseverance with a dose of fearlessness to keep moving toward goals.
  • Observant leaders are committed to taking in as much information as possible in order to make the best decisions.

 All good ideas. And all a lot harder to do then say.

Deb: Very true. So, who are your ideal clients?

Krissi: I've worked with clients that range from the Fortune 50, to a local heating & plumbing company, to a global sex toy distributor and everything in between. There are several distinct parts to my business: strategic planning & implementation, executive coaching, behavioral assessments, public speaking and leadership training. Over 90 percent of the companies I've worked with have exceeded their goals, so it looks like it's working pretty well.

My ideal client is one where leadership is aware of a problem or challenge and has the commitment to turn it around. Once there is alignment on the goal there's an extremely high likelihood of success. Behaviors precede results, so for implement to take hold I coach to change behaviors.

The FIDO Factor Business Book Cover

Deb: You've certainly had a lot of experiences with all types of organizations.  What inspires you to do the work you do?

Krissi: Many things inspire me, but the most important one is I genuinely care about people. This is especially true for my clients. I am interested in them and will do everything I can to help them succeed. This passion comes through in virtually every interaction I have, whether they're the receptionist at the front desk or the owner of the company.

I am a competitor, so I also love to win. And that means I want my clients to succeed because once they hire me, I'm on their team.

I had breast cancer a few years ago and I'm happy to report that I'm doing great. But it also taught me that there is more to life than work. I've chaired over 30 major charitable events that have helped thousands of people. I'm inspired by my incredible family, our dogs, by nature, and by a deep desire to learn.

Deb: I'm so glad to hear that you're doing great. And you certainly keep very busy! What is your favorite activity to relax and unwind?

Krissi: This is the hardest question so far! My motor runs very high, so I work too much. I have a bad habit of not taking enough "me" time. I'm working on this.

My favorite times are spent with my husband, son, and dogs. When our pack is together I'm happy. My husband and I take our dogs on a walk through the park every morning for exercise and we all love it. In addition I enjoy hiking, bike riding and playing golf.

I also have a love of gardening. Few things relax me more than planting and tending to my flowers. A few years ago I also learned how to play the harp. It's a very difficult instrument that I still haven't mastered. I love playing the harp outside surrounded by my flowers and dogs and family. Throw in a glass of chardonnay and I'd call that hard to beat!

About Krissi Barr

Krissi Barr is CEO of Barr Corporate Success, consultants specializing in strategic planning, executive coaching, and behavioral assessments, and the co-author of The Fido Factor: How to Get a Leg Up at Work.

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