Mother knows best. In honor of Mother’s Day, we asked local business leaders to share lessons that they have learned from their mothers and how they have applied them into their professional and personal lives. Here are some lessons business leaders say they learned from Mom:

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Tad Gary

Both my mom and my grandmother, both of whom I lost last year, were absolute forces of nature. They are constantly in the back of my mind in everything that I do, especially when setting priorities or making decisions at Mercy Care. When I think about my mom, I think first about absolute strength and resilience. But I also think of her incredible empathy and deep belief that all people – no matter their circumstances – deserve to be treated with respect. I take all of that with me both when working with my teammates and serving our members, their families, and providers. She was also, at all times, focused on family above all else at all times. As a result, I encourage every person on my team to be family focused first, be it their birth family or chosen family. Choose their health, happiness, and wellness each day, and we will all benefit. Apply the importance of family in all you do – and understand when working with members that they are someone’s family, too. And finally, my mom never forgot where she came from, and because of her, I will never either.

Tad Gary, deputy chief executive officer, Mercy Care

When I think of mom, I think of fearlessness. It didn’t matter if the subject was her career, her hobbies, or her family, she pursued what was interesting to her with unapologetic gusto. She never worried about her knowledge or experience as she was totally confident in her ability to improvise as needed. She told people what she wanted, and she didn’t take her foot off the gas until she achieved it. As a kid, I was occasionally embarrassed by this boldness, yet those seeds were planted in me. Today, I draw on those lessons as a senior marketing executive. The world is moving fast, and you can either let change intimidate you or you can jump in with both feet and trust yourself. Whenever I have doubts, I think of mom and try to make her proud by being bold like she taught me.

Jason Greenwood, senior vice president of marketing and communications, Delta Dental of Arizona

It is so simple, but my mother always taught me to be 15 minutes early. Always when we were attending sports events, church, and appointments; it was better to be early so you can compose yourself rather than being just on time. It is a game changer.

Kevin Kelly, general manager, The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain

I can’t remember a time when my mom wasn’t volunteering her time to a worthy cause. And that commitment to supporting nonprofit organizations is something that I value as well. It doesn’t matter if you give a little or a lot, it is important to me personally and to our team that we support the good work of a variety of organizations in our community.

Abbie S. Fink, president, HMA Public Relations

My mom taught me a couple of really special things I carry with me every day. She taught me that we are never too busy to help those in need and we should be mindful to listen more than we talk.

Alec Clark, founder and president, Plexus Worldwide

My mother, Mimi Rogers, taught me the power of perseverance and unconditional love. Through her example, I’ve learned to never give up, especially when facing challenges. Her decision to start One Step Beyond stemmed from her unwavering belief in my sister Dylan’s potential. This lesson has not only shaped my personal life but also my professional journey. It’s taught me to see possibilities where others see limitations, ultimately contributing to my success in both realms.

Madison Blanton, chief executive officer, One Step Beyond

Shannon Scally

My mom was a selfless leader in her public transportation career, and she shaped me into the leader I am today. Cindy Scally single-handedly changed the culture at her office by creating special dress-up themed days, hosting team-building events and personally baking birthday cakes to make teammates feel special. Now that she’s retired, I can see she was ahead of her time with one-on-one check-ins with employees and setting development goals. Through her experiences, I learned how to fully invest in employees, how to build team morale and that small things can make a big impact.

Shannon Scally, Director of Learning & Development, POV Foods Restaurant Group

My mom, chef Michelle Jurisin, taught me the importance of productivity. The number of things she’s able to accomplish in a small amount of time is incredible. If you give her an hour in a kitchen, she will absolutely amaze you. That has followed me in my career because it taught me ‘time is money’. Your working hours need to be spent as productively as possible so you can enjoy your non-working hours. Entrepreneurial mothers, I feel, are especially incredible because they are pushing themselves in their businesses and that work doesn’t stop when they go home. My mom didn’t stop when she got home and only recently has felt a little more comfortable “resting” which in itself is productive at times. You have to take care of yourself to be your best in other areas of your life. Thanks Mama!

Nicole Jurisin, operations, marketing and public relations manager, Tavern Hotel and The Haunted Group

My hardworking mother inspires me to “échale ganas” in everything I do, a mantra which translates to “give it your all” or “do your best.” I have carried my mother’s words throughout my personal and professional life as an attorney for the Foster Group. Today, I seek traces of my mother, my family, and my community in each client I serve, embracing her lesson to give the best of myself and help others in need.

Milca Altamirano

Milca Altamirano, associate attorney, The Foster Group

In 1972, my mother Sharron Luoma opened Cactus Flower Florists at the intersection of Scottsdale Road and Shea Boulevard when they were two lane roads. Back in those days, some customers rode up on horses, and the flower shop also served as a post office for the city of Scottsdale. I grew up working in the flower shop, standing on a milk crate ringing up customers, learning the art of customer service, and watching my mom be a successful entrepreneur. My mom taught me that being invested in the community by volunteering and giving back is a big part of why Cactus Flower Florists is successful. Her mantra of ‘give back to the community that gives us so much’ continues to this day. Today, Cactus Flower Florists is still a family owned and operated business with five retail locations across the Valley. We have more than 50 employees who help deliver the message of giving back through our Cactus Cares program, donating time, product, and dollars to local organizations and charities. My mom would be so proud to see how much Cactus Flower Florists has blossomed in the communities that we serve!

Eric Luoma, president and owner, Cactus Flower Florists

I was fortunate to have worked alongside my mom for over ten years, and we still talk about business and clients. She taught me to smile while on the phone, as she was certain the guests would notice. This directly influenced my view and beliefs about hospitality—that every interaction creates an experience for your guest and that every detail, every moment, matters. My mom has lived with a neuro-muscular disease for as long as I’ve been alive, and her bravery, attitude, and overall desire to not just persevere but thrive have been a guiding force for me both personally and in business. I learned that some days are just difficult, but how you outwardly position yourself determines the daily outcome. Her relentlessly positive attitude showed me how to push through. Constant effort, introspection, and growth will lead one through the bad and into better times.  She taught me that you cannot change people, but you can inspire them, show them a path, and let them choose. This has inspired all of our systems—showing care and standards, installing the framework, and then seeking out the people who want to foster all of that and add more.  Most importantly, she reinforced pride in hard work and the power of gratitude.

Steve Short, chief operating officer and chief culinary officer, Atlasta Catering

Josh Hartman

My mom said to always show true compassion and great humor. She was the head nurse on a mental health ward for 35 years. She connected with her patients by making jokes and acting goofy. Must be where I got the goofy part.

Josh Hartmann, chief executive officer and board member, NexMetro

My mom has always had the viewpoint that if something isn’t going well, it’s up to you to fix it. She taught me there’s a solution for everything and it’s never productive to put blame on other people. I’ve watched her lead by this example as far back as I can remember. And now, it’s not only how I approach challenges, but I believe is the key to my successes in both business and life. I love you, Mom! My grandmother was also very influential in my life. Before she passed, my grandmother once said to me that she lived her life as fully as she could. That sentiment really stuck with me because it taught me that risks should be taken with intention. I have a responsibility as a father, husband, and business leader, and taking risks can change lives positively in so many ways. The reality is you go through this life one time, it’s not about having ‘no regrets’, it’s about being present in the moment and looking back to think ‘I said ‘yes” to the right experiences and opportunities that enhanced the lives of me and my family, my clients and team.

Jim Manley, founder and chief executive officer, Manley Creative

My mother’s lessons have defined my career and taught me the value of integrity, how to embrace adversity with dignity and to always trust my instincts. Through her wisdom, I have learned to let intuition guide my journey, building successful relationships along the way and navigating life’s challenges with the utmost grace and resilience.

Varesh Chaurasia, chief executive officer, HealthyU Clinics

My mom epitomizes the core beliefs that Forrest Anderson was founded on: treat others right, do your best work, and always do the right thing. As a third-generation family business, the spirit of family is ingrained in everything we do. She is seen as ‘mom’ to many people on our team.

Audrey Monell, president, Forrest Anderson Plumbing and Air Conditioning

Sara Wilson

My mother taught: when faced with uncertainty or indecision, seek knowledge. Rather than rushing into judgment, take the opportunity to delve deeper, to educate oneself, to truly grasp the nuances of the situation. Armed with understanding, one can then approach the matter with renewed confidence and insight. Today I celebrate not just her guidance, but the enduring impact of her teachings on my life’s journey. Happy Mother’s Day to a source of endless inspiration and wisdom.

Sara Wilson, chief executive officer, Home Assist Health

My mother, Angie, was a Greek immigrant who raised my sister and I as a single mom. She was a true force of nature who willed her way through life to ensure she put us in the best position to achieve the American dream. She taught us, by example, to help others when they need help, to love not just our family, but also our fellow man and to serve others. She was the most courageous person I know. Our mission at Angie’s Lobster, Angie’s Prime Grill and Angie’s Burger, to make luxury foods affordable to everyone, was inspired by her. We’re doing this for all the Angies of the world and we will make sure that her legacy of strength, resiliency and love for others’ lives on for generations to come.

Tony Christofellis, co-founder, Angie’s Food Concepts