T-mobile’s CEO doesn’t mince words, and when John Legere took the helm in 2012, he didn’t make a lot of friends. At an early press conference, he vowed to “redefine a stupid, broken and arrogant industry.”

When Scott Porad joined Rover.com to run the technical infrastructure that matched dog owners with providers of pet sitting and pet walking services, he thought it would be familiar. He had already built many e-commerce sites with internet pioneers like Starwave, Drugstore.com and Cheezburger Network. But keeping dog owners happy was nothing like dispensing online cat humor. An eight-pound schnauzer has different needs from a frisky Labrador retriever, and each owner’s expectations vary as well.

By the time Scott Svenson and his wife Ally launched their fast-casual pizza chain, they had already started and exited two successful enterprises in London.

While most executives find success through building relationships, Darryl Rawlings prospers by redefining them.

Unlike many financial leaders after the banking crisis, incoming CEO Benson Porter had to manage expansion.

Staying close to home has worked pretty well for Budd Gould, who founded his first restaurant in Bellevue in 1969.

Discipline and persistence, traits that help Pioneer Human Services’ clients build productive lives while bearing a criminal history, come naturally to CEO Karen Lee, a graduate of the United States Military Academy.

What happens when a disrupter encounters disruption of its own? Real estate brokerage Redfin stormed the gates of an entrenched industry in 2006 through a lower-fee, internet-fueled model, refunding a portion of agent commissions to homeowners. Like the company’s founders, CEO Glenn Kelman was steeped in software development, and he saw inefficiencies to slash. The market crash in 2008 later put Kelman and his team through their paces, as they struggled to keep the brash new company afloat. Having to get tough during those times forged Redfin’s identity, Kelman notes.