Take 5 With Rich Sauer: Leading With Trust and Empathy

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Rich Sauer is open to change. Serving as chief legal officer and head of corporate affairs at Workday, Rich has managed his career with a willingness to take on new opportunities—across cultures and geographies—with empathy, enthusiasm, and curiosity. 

Growing up, he had his sights set on working on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. After receiving his bachelor’s degree, Rich took a role working for a member of Congress in his home state of Ohio, where he helped local residents navigate government complexities, such as aiding military veterans lost in the system to secure Veterans Administration health-related benefits. 

Rich’s dream of working on the Hill came true: He transferred to the Ohio representative’s D.C. office to be a legislative aide, while also pursuing his law degree at American University’s Washington College of Law at night. After law school, he joined a firm where Microsoft was a client, and after building a rapport with the Microsoft team, he was offered an in-house position in Seattle. 

In his 20 years at Microsoft, Rich built a reputation as someone who could take on different roles and quickly figure out how to succeed. During his tenure, he served as a litigator in Seattle,

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