202. Former Corporate Exec Now Helps Set Up New Entrepreneurs
Kevin Williams comes from upper levels of corporate America and now helps downsized and outsourced individuals become entrepreneurs, finding unique opportunities outside of the standard job market. He owns a master office license of a company that allows him to work directly with executives as a liaison to candidates seeking franchise opportunities.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
Working at a ground floor job with a photofinishing lab, newly married, his world view dramatically changed with the birth of a baby daughter. “This job is not going to work for me,” he told himself, and got busy looking for a better paying job. Eastman Kodak—which was the number one brand in the world at that time—fit the bill. He landed a job there and soon was working at corporate headquarters in Rochester, New York. It was the beginning of 40 years in the photo industry.
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
Kevin’s corporate career took him around the world and into most states in the U.S., with job titles like division director and VP of sales and marketing. As the world began going digital—and as Kodak was not changing with the times—Kevin knew it was time to leave the company he loved. Witnessing major lay-offs and downsizing, he set his sights on the new economy and on helping casualties of the old economy find places as entrepreneurs.
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“I’ve looked at myself as the utility infielder. Some people only want to be the pitcher, the star. Then the shoulder goes out they have nothing, because that’s the one thing they used. Learn as much as you can and diversify what you learn. Try not to get frustrated when things are not happening at your speed. Doors will open, some will close. Sometimes you step back a little bit, only to step farther ahead than you were before.”
Steps to Success from Kevin Williams
1. Treat all people well. It just helps to be nice to people.
2. Learn and practice effective networking before you really need anything from anybody.
3. Be a giver, not a taker. Bring value to your relationships.
4. Keep up with technology. Don’t be “that guy” who refuses to grow and change.
On His Bookshelf
Kiss, Bow, Or Shake Hands: The Bestselling Guide to Doing Business in More Than 60 Countries, 2nd Edition, by Terri Morrison and Wayne A. Conaway
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t, by Jim Collins
Books by John C. Maxwell and Harvey McKay
The Heart of Networking, 2nd edition, by Ricky Steele
Top Tools on His Browser
Social media, especially Facebook and LinkedIn.
Connecting With Kevin Williams
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