Part strategist and part cheerleader, Stephen Viets is a three-time Top 10 branch manager. Viets says that the job also requires a diplomat's tact. "It's all about handling insecurities and misunderstanding," he says. Above and beyond the daily performance targets and machinations of the financial markets, Viets sees his job as dealing with the delicate balance of personalities that make up a highly charged financial environment. By using his study of clinical psychology and his love of chess to see the myriad possibilities of personal interactions, Viets tries to "insinuate myself into situations—not reacting—and find out what both sides are looking for."

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