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ELS Spotlight With Gabe Roberts

Gabe Roberts is Vice President/Loan Officer for First Community Bank in Jonesboro, Arkansas.

What is the most important leadership lesson that you've learned?

Being honest with your employees and your clients goes a long way. When you are honest with them during the good and the bad you form a deeper relationship. Also, being transparent enables people to grow both personally and professionally. I have been lucky to have mentors and leaders surround me throughout my career who have molded me into the person I am today. Through open communication I have been able to grow and learn.

What's your biggest leadership struggle?

When I was a child I always heard the phrase "I wish there was more time in a day." As an adult I now understand why I heard this so much. As a banker and a father, the work-personal life balance can be something many struggle with. Balancing this every day is something to monitor.

What is the most effective daily habit you possess?

Each morning I write down my goals and objectives for the day. This habit keeps me on track and can sometimes motivate me to get more done. This habit also helps when the unexpected happens.

What is the greatest advice you have ever been given?

My father told me when I was college and still uncertain which career I wanted to pursue that "if you love what you do you will never work a day in your life." I have always loved numbers and communicating with people. I have been lucky for the vast majority of my career to be able to speak with people of all different backgrounds each day. I truly love my position and our bank.

What does effective leadership look like to you?

I believe the best leaders are the ones who are consistent and are good at listening to others.

How has leadership changed in 2021?

In 2021 leadership has been changed in a few ways. I believe the best leaders in banking and across our state are the ones that have been able to listen and adapt with their staff the best. Great leaders today are the ones who encourage and bring people together. These leaders I believe are the best listeners and care the most about their staffs concerns. A happy staff results in a better customer experience.

The ELS Spotlight is an ongoing series to highlight our Emerging Leaders from around Arkansas.