Today’s guest brings a wealth of first-hand knowledge to growing tech firms using more than 30 years of experience as an entrepreneur, business leader, and angel investor.
She played principal roles in pioneering several B2B technology firms. As co-founder of SpaceWorks, an eCommerce software company, she facilitated its startup and growth to nearly $25 million in revenue; at America Online, she designed the PR program and investor roadshow for the IPO; at United Press International, she facilitated a turn-around strategy; and for LEXIS/NEXIS, she was instrumental in the creation and successful launch of a new division.
Since founding Best Marketing LLC in 2001, she has consulted with more than 90 early-stage and growth-stage tech companies on their go-to-market strategies. In 2018, she was appointed Chair of the National Women's Business Council, a federal agency that advocates for female founders. She is immediate past Board Chair of the Dingman Center of Entrepreneurship at the University of Maryland.
Please join me in welcoming Liz Sara.
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In this episode we discuss:
- her thoughts on leadership: “Leadership is about seizing an opportunity. It’s filling a need or solving a problem. A true leader has excitement about their idea, product, or solution.”
- her theory about 1st born children being predisposed to being leaders.
- how one book in the 80s changed the trajectory of her life.
- the realization that as entrepreneurs we never really plan the next step of our journey.
- her desire to be in new emerging markets and help people in those spaces excel.
- her advice for current college students and how they can take advantage of upcoming trends.
- how she nurtures and sustains her network by blocking time in her calendar every week to do outreach via email or the telephone.
Books mentioned in this episode:
- “Megatrends: Ten New Directions Transforming Our Lives” by John Naisbitt
Robbie Samuels wrote “How to Host a Virtual a Happy Hour” for Harvard Business Review, was quoted in “The History of the Webinar and Why It Should Be History” in Forbes, and recognized as an “industry expert in the field of digital event design” by JDC Events. He is a Certified Virtual Convener and Certified Virtual Presenter.
As a Virtual Event Design Consultant and Executive Zoom Producer, he assists organizations with bringing their in-person events strategically online. He provides virtual event design strategy, emceeing, production (managing the tech, including chat and breakout rooms), and training/supporting presenters.
His clients include national and statewide advocacy organizations, including the California WIC Association, Feeding America, Visiting Nurse Service of New York, Association of Talent & Development chapter, The National At-Home Dad Network, the California Notary Symposium, and the U.S. Embassy in Mexico.
He created The 5% Advantage Program, a four-week certification program that helps presenters and meeting professionals grow in their confidence with Zoom, online facilitation, and virtual event design so they can reduce their tech angst and host more engaging online experiences. Participants have the opportunity to become Certified Virtual Event Professional #NoMoreBadZoom.
Since March 13, 2020, he has hosted #NoMoreBadZoom Virtual Happy Hours, a weekly virtual event that explores new ways to design engaging virtual experiences while creating opportunities for networking. This event attracts 50-60 participants each week, 50% of them have attended 8 or more times, 20% have attended more than 20 times.
PRE- AND BEYOND VIRTUAL EVENTS
Robbie is also a keynote speaker, TEDx speaker, and business growth strategist who has been recognized as a “networking expert” by Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Lifehacker, and Inc. He is the author of the best-selling business book Croissants vs. Bagels: Strategic, Effective, and Inclusive Networking at Conferences and has been profiled in the Harvard Business Review, Forbes, and Fast Company. He writes for Harvard Business Review Ascend.
He has been featured in several books including Stand Out: How to Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following Around It by Dorie Clark and The Connector’s Advantage: 7 Mindsets to Grow Your Influence and Impact by Michelle Tillis Lederman. Since 2016, Robbie has hosted his On the Schmooze podcast which features his interviews with talented professionals sharing their untold stories of leadership and networking.
He has guest lectured at many leading educational institutions including Harvard University, Brown University, Cornell University, and Northeastern University. He has presented for associations, women’s leadership summits, and corporations including Marriott, AmeriCorps, Hostelling International, and General Assembly.
READ his “9 Ways to Network in a Pandemic” – www.robbiesamuels.com/9ways
SIGN UP for his free weekly #NoMoreBadZoom Virtual Happy Hours – www.NoMoreBadZoom.com
Interested in booking Robbie to speak? At www.robbiesamuels.com/speaking you’ll find video clips and a description of his signature session, Art of the Schmooze. Call 617-600-8240 to speak directly with Robbie.
Watch his TEDx talk “Hate networking? Stop bageling and be the croissant!” at www.robbiesamuels.com/TEDx.
The 5% Advantage Program – #NoMoreBadZoom
Are virtual events a big part of your business plan? People have started to be less forgiving when it comes to bad Zoom, causing “Zoom fatigue.”
- You need the confidence and skills to up your game. The problem is that there are so many new pieces of technology to master quickly that you can feel stuck, overwhelmed, and like you’re running out of time.
- The reason options are overwhelming is that you’re trying to go from zero to 100 immediately, when — to make the most of your time — focusing on getting 5% better every time you host would allow you to focus on the most important and highest-impact options.
- Why? Because you know it’s true that if you try to do everything, you will accomplish nothing. This means, to achieve your goal, you have to invest in a strategy to put time on your side.
- How? The 5% Advantage Program teaches online facilitation and virtual event design, but even more so, give you the tools for reflection and continuous improvement.
- Through this interactive and experiential 4-week program you will grow in your confidence with Zoom, online facilitation, and virtual event design so you can reduce your tech angst and host more engaging online experiences that meet the purpose of the convening and participants’ need for content and connection.
- The time to start getting 5% better is now because you will be sought out, not just for your expertise, but for your ability to deliver that expertise on an interactive virtual platform.
- Interested to learn more about this program and get on the waitlist? Details at www.the5percentadvantage.com.
Business Growth Strategist & Business Coach
As a relationship-based business growth strategist, I work directly with a limited number of self-employed professionals, aka solopreneurs.
WHO YOU ARE:
You want to have a greater impact and increased income. The problem is that there are so many options for how to build your business that you can feel stuck, overwhelmed, and like you’re running out of time.
The reason options are overwhelming is that you’re looking at them as a series of disconnected steps, when to make the most of your time, you need a strategy that connects only the most important and highest impact ones.
You know that if you try to do everything, you’ll accomplish nothing. This means, to achieve your goal, you have to invest in a strategy to put time on your side.
As a relationship-based business growth strategist, I will work with you to design a year-long plan that consists of three 12-week sprints, each followed by 4 weeks of reflection/assessment, rejuvenation/vacation, and strategic planning. This will allow you to sequence your goals, create momentum, and leverage your limited time.
We can build your plan through a half-day strategy session, a coaching engagement, or a mastermind program.
These are not right for everyone; they’re personalized offerings and are priced accordingly.
What might you work on?
In my coaching work with entrepreneurs and solopreneurs, we focus on the areas where you’d like to grow, which may include:
- Creating a strong sales conversation framework
- Building your referral network
- Lead generation through a relationships
- Growing your visibility in your industry
- Increasing your ability to attract the right kind of clients
- Identifying and launching a minimally-viable offer
- Breaking through whatever bottleneck is holding you back from getting the results you want and deserve
- Becoming a published author and marketing your book successfully
- Improving your virtual presentation skills
Ready to get started or have questions? Contact me. I’m excited to support you in reaching or exceeding your goals.
- Connect with Robbie on LinkedIn
- @RobbieSamuels on Twitter and Instagram
- New to his website? Start here
- On the Schmooze podcast archive – weekly since July 2016!
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Affiliate Links: Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links above are “affiliate links”. This means that if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products and services I use personally and believe will add value to my listeners. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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