Leading With Faith honoree – Luke Cahill

| August 9, 2018 | 0 Comments
Luke Cahill

Dave Hrbacek/The Catholic Spirit

Luke Cahill

Managing principal, REAL Insight Inc.

Age 35

Parish St. John the Baptist, Savage

Spouse Angela Cahill

Children Lachlan (9), Torin (7), Callum (5), Beccan (3), Tressa (2 months)

Volunteer activities Catholic Services Appeal Foundation board member, St. John the Baptist strategic planning team member, Christians in Commerce board member, Imagine the Possibilities mentor at Risen Christ Catholic School in Minneapolis, soccer coach

Education University of Minnesota-Morris, 2005; MBA, University of St. Thomas, 2007

Number of years with company 11 years

For Luke Cahill, “leading with faith” means always acting with integrity in the workplace. The managing principal at REAL Insight Inc. in Minneapolis, Cahill strives to integrate his faith into every aspect of his work, big or small. He has learned to trust his team and rely on the gifts of the Holy Spirit to guide him. As a result, he has found an overwhelming sense of peace in the workplace.

Q. Describe your business.

A. We are a marketing research company that does qualitative research for large consumer goods companies and retailers.

Q. Describe your position and role.

A. My title is managing principal. At this point, my role is largely setting strategic direction, managing business development and supporting my team behind the scenes as they field projects.

Q. What does “leading with faith” mean to you?

A. My goal is to embody Christ to my coworkers, clients and partners, and by doing so, to inspire and motivate them to do the same. Too often Christians separate their faith lives from their work lives. Work can be stressful and difficult, which presents many opportunities to fall into the temptations of ingratitude, anger, gossip or complacency. To live out our faith through our actions means to let our behavior exemplify the fruits of the Holy Spirit: peace, patience, love, etc. If we integrate our work and non-work lives, exemplifying these virtues, we will influence and impact those around us.

Q. How do you concretely apply your faith and Catholic values at work?

A. Applying my faith in the workplace often takes place through the little decisions I make each day. Occasionally there will be big, visible situations that require a bold decision, but every day presents little opportunities to be Christ to others. Being patient when most would be impatient, striving for excellence, finding the good in frustrating people and situations, being generous with time and mentorship, etc. are examples of what I focus on every day.

Q. Please tell a story about a time when living out your faith at work really made a difference.

A. One of our teams did a study that exposed some results that, if reported, would have caused concern from the client’s legal department and ultimately thrown a wrench in the plans for the client’s marketing team. As a result, my team was asked to omit specific information from the reports. However, when my project lead asked me what they should do, I told him to report the findings accurately. Meanwhile, I called one of the client team members who was involved with the project to talk through our plan to accurately report the findings and recommendations. Ultimately, the client acknowledged that including the difficult findings was the right thing to do and thanked us for taking an ethical stand. My team was grateful they did not have to do something against their conscience.

Q. Who or what has inspired you to bring your faith to the marketplace?

A. I am blessed to be connected with an organization called Christians in Commerce. I got involved two years ago when I was asked to help them with a research project. In doing that pro bono work for them, I was exposed to their mission of bringing Christ to the workplace and became aware of what it meant to live out my faith at work. They have a half-day workshop called Working for My Father that was especially helpful in changing my perspective on work and my career.

Q. What achievement at work are you most proud of?

A. Earlier on in my career, as our company started to grow, I thought too highly of myself as the expert for all aspects of the business. As a result, I became the bottleneck for everything and quickly got burnt out. In response, I have learned to take good advice and to define our company core values, hire and train the right people, and then trust them and get out of the way. Now we have a team of diversely talented individuals who help us be successful in all aspects of the business, and our business and our team have thrived as a result of this transition.

Q. In what specific ways have you experienced God’s presence in your workplace?

A. The biggest way I have experienced his presence is through my feelings of peace and love. For example, I have always been a fairly judgmental person and often too critical of others. However, through being baptized in the Holy Spirit and incorporating a morning prayer routine, God’s love has been able to shine through, and I have been able to more consistently view those around me for the good they possess versus their deficiencies.

Q. What advice do you have for others who want to lead with faith?

A. Start each day in prayer and ask the Holy Spirit to fill you, asking for help to consistently make the right choices, to be full of peace, and to stand out as exceptional and different because of how you live your life at work; this is only possible through Christ’s love flowing through you.


Category: Leading With Faith