Once you've have climbed the corporate ladder at several companies and you decide that it is time to leave the top of the ladder to take the ultimate risks – amongst other to do what you always wanted to do - before it’s too late … you join a professional practice but you realize that you must go solo and you exit gracefully… you have to learn to survive setbacks in pursuit of your dreams and personal demands, what do you do when you are down on your back?
If you're Karl Smith, you look up, get up, look around and discover networking articles gathered over many years, see the opportunity, research and design a programme, learn from the experiences, take different decisions and you dedicate yourself to understanding what makes people win with other people, refer opportunities to each other, succeed against all odds and earn a reputation that dominates to out-influence and out-sell everyone else, bottling it, and sharing it with the world.
As he continued to reflect on his life and as he connected the dots of key events, he emerged from his self-imposed self-study of self-improvement literature and introspection with a deep influence George Matthew words - There is no such thing as a 'self-made' man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success - on his approach to networking and success.
Following his first public workshops in 2006 entitled “Leverage The Power of Business Networking for Personal and Professional Success”, Karl Smith continued to drive the message that “winning with yourself is key to win with other people when you network, build mutually beneficial business relationships, build a unique personal brand and in all other areas of your life”.
He broadened his vision to obtain international recognition as Africa’s premier authentic networking and business relationship building expert. In 2010, his expertise was recognized by the Global Networking Council - home of the world's leading writers, speakers, leaders, facilitators and thinkers on networking, referrals, trust, relationships, influence and communication.
Says Karl Smith, “In a world of increasing commoditization, the depth of relationships is the only way to connect with new markets and new clients, grow profitable customers, protect margins, execute strategic plans, work effectively within organisations, accelerate career advancement, derive real joy from work and move your business forward. Yet most of us don't spend enough time building, nurturing and quantifying the key personal, functional and strategic relationships we need to achieve success”.
In addition to refining and reinforcing his message in subsequent books (Beyond The Business Handshake, Networking Etiquette 101, 50 Deadly Networking Habits, Secrets To Getting Referrals and How To Position Your Personal Brand as an Expert), he founded Business Networking South Africa to help professionals and organizations to reap the dividends of solid business relationships and a remarkable reputation advantage.
His newest project, How to Position Your Personal Brand as an Expert in Your Field, is an ebook to help you bypass those bumps and pitfalls he ran into along the way. Mistakes that cost you time, clients and income. It goes beyond the superficial and non-sustainable hype about personal branding today to understand the difference between being popular and being an expert.
Karl Smith has a high-energy, authentic style and customizes his programmes for his audiences - from shorter speaking engagements to one- to two-day seminars. Karl has earned the respect and heart-felt thanks everywhere with his consistent professionalism and motivating programmes.
He is consistently ranked by audience surveys as "knowledgeable", "insightful", "entertaining", ”motivating" and "pragmatic". By the conclusion of the sessions there will be no doubt how to use what is learned as well as how to apply it to other current and future situations.
Karl Smith is recognized as a thought leader in his field and he has been interviewed or featured in major media world-wide and publications including Accountancy South Africa, CEO, Black Business Quarterly, Your Business, South African Association of Business Communities, BizStart and Skills Universe. He featured on numerous radio programmes in cities across the country. He has just released a paper entitled “Cross Cultural Networking: Secrets to Harnessing Your Share” to help BNSA’s members to develop or maintain successful cross-cultural business relationships.
Karl Smith can speak on individual topics or combine several topics for a customised presentation that goes beyond superficial tips to help you and your organisation to move from where you are to where you want to be. In the words of Abraham Lincoln, "That some achieve great success is proof to all that others can achieve it as well". It is this captivating spirit that audiences find so motivating
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