Spring 2021
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The Final Word / Conversations with Extraordinary People

This year marks the 15th anniversary for Jabian Consulting. In honor of that achievement we sat down with Jabian’s three founding partners to discuss the past, present, and future of the firm, what this milestone means to them, and what the next 15 years look like.
Chris Reinking, Brian Betkowski & Nigel Zelcer

What does celebrating 15 years in business mean to you?

Chris: It’s obviously a source of great pride and a major milestone. I think it’s a proof point that we’ve been making a profound difference for our clients, employees, and communities.

Nigel: I agree. Statistically, more than 75 percent of businesses never reach this mark, so I’m proud that our approach has been successful.

Brian: I think it’s a testament to our approach to doing business and just satisfaction with both achieving something and creating opportunities for others.

How have the guiding principles been a part of the success?

B: When we developed them, it was just about identifying the kind of environment where we wanted to spend our careers.

C: We had the opportunity to create a consulting firm that takes the best parts of the job and makes them the whole package. Why wouldn’t you want to work with the best people? Why wouldn’t you want to make giving back a part of your culture? Why wouldn’t you want to have fun?

N: Some have asked if they are hard to maintain, and our position is, not at all. Every time we’ve stuck to them, whether it’s taking a marathon instead of sprint approach or only hiring the best people, it’s paid off for the company. That makes it very easy to sustain.

What is something you’ve been most proud of over the 15 years?

C: If you prioritize people — clients, community, and colleagues — then the whole emphasis changes on what you can accomplish. Giving people the opportunity to do work that they really enjoy, it changes the game.

B: One of the most rewarding things is the size of community impact we can make with a small number of people. Partly I believe it’s because of our three-pillar approach of providing financial support, volunteering our time, and providing professional leadership to these community organizations.

N: I would echo all of that and add seeing the success of our people in their careers. These are highly intelligent, highly motivated people, and providing an environment for them to blossom and supporting that growth has been extremely fulfilling to see.

What are you excited about the most over the next 15 years?

B: I’m excited to see how our people flourish in their careers. We are at a place now where we can scale, where we can realize significant growth due to the maturation of the firm, and that’s going to open a lot of new opportunities for people.

N: The realization of the legacy firm we’ll be is very exciting — the realization of that scale and not knowing where exactly that will take us, but I know it will be based on our principles, so it will be successful.

C: Fifteen years from now, the world will look very different. We’ve learned the appreciation of being in front of challenging trends in the marketplace, trends that will impact our clients and ourselves. It’s exciting to know we’ll be on the leading edge of that transformation.

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