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Tut Smith

Chief Development Officer and Founder

Tut Smith has spent the past 30 years starting and running businesses and contact centers, culminating with leadership of Clear Harbor’s expansion into consumer goods, healthcare, insurance, and telecom industries. The customer care industry has countless opportunities for experienced business leaders to develop the rising generation of service leaders. Tut’s greatest passion at Clear Harbor is in mentoring the young women and young men who support our client brands. Tut has created and personally delivered a variety of interactive leadership workshops and mentoring programs at Clear Harbor.

Tut founded Clear Harbor in 2004, focusing growth of the company in countries that desperately needed employers to provide not just jobs, but career opportunities for an eager and capable labor pool. He believes it is important that leaders of companies take time to really get to know the people on their teams. Employees must know you care before they will pay attention to anything you have to share.

As customer care has evolved, Tut believes companies have begun to realize that the customer experience is now the most important attribute of the brand, not product or price. With customer access to social media so prevalent today, brand reputations are determined more and more by the quality of the customer experience, not by advertising, sales pitches, or PR. This makes our jobs as customer care specialists vitally important as we represent and reflect those brands. There is no margin for error – every single customer interaction is a moment of truth that can make or break a brand.

One of the important principles that has guided Tut’s decision-making at Clear Harbor is his belief that leaders must be vulnerable and transparent, openly sharing their mistakes so others will feel comfortable sharing. The “golden rule” is increasingly important as we prepare our teams to interact with customers – treating others how you want to be treated is a key mindset for success and longevity.

Another area of special focus for Tut is conducting in-depth due diligence with prospective clients, ensuring we can successfully mirror the client brand after go-live. Tut invests the personal time needed to confirm that the “fit” between Clear Harbor and each new client is solid, building close relationships with company leaders and stakeholders as this process unfolds. He takes great pride in ensuring that Clear Harbor will be a value-add reflection partner for the long term.

Tut believes the future of customer care hinges on each brand’s willingness to invest in the customer experience. This action must be more than lip service to impress shareholders. It must pervade every area of customer care operations. Authenticity counts, according to Tut, and he sets the standard at Clear Harbor when it comes to leading with empathy, patience, and a desire to do the right thing for others.

Tut enjoys spending time with his growing family and is a loyal Georgia Bulldogs fan.