Editor’s note: Serial entrepreneur and investor Donald Thompson joins WRAL TechWire today as a regular contributor. His columns will appear on Wednesdays.
My goal with this column is to help you become a better business leader. When WRAL Techwire invited me to participate, I saw this space as an exciting opportunity to do what I love most: share my perspective as an executive and entrepreneur to help others identify opportunities, grow their businesses and hone their leadership skills.
To that end, this column will explore a wide range of subjects affecting business leaders and entrepreneurs today – from growth strategies, to marketing and investment insights, to diversity and inclusion initiatives and more. It will also delve into some uncomfortable conversations about success, failure and improvement. My hope is to provide inspiration and credible insights that help you build a stronger business and push yourself towards personal growth.
After twenty years as a leader in technology, marketing and sales, I define myself – first and foremost – as an entrepreneur. It sits at the core of who I am and the companies I lead. As an executive, I am the CEO at Walk West, a full-service digital marketing agency. As an innovator, I am the founder of The Diversity Movement, a comprehensive learning platform that provides online courses, videos, podcasts and consultancy that empowers businesses to embed diversity and inclusion within their company foundation. As an entrepreneur, I am an investor, an advisor, an author, a speaker and a podcast host. As an individual, I am the son of a football coach who showed me the value of teamwork, strategy and winning. But above all, I am an optimist.
Entrepreneur, investor Donald Thompson to write weekly column for WRAL TechWire
This column will encourage you to think like an optimist too: to seek out opportunities and refine your entrepreneurial qualities to become a better leader in your industry, whether you run a successful startup or work for a more traditional company.
One of the core topics we will discuss is what I like to call Next Generation Leadership Competencies. These competencies supersede all industries to drive measurable business growth. The skills that comprise them include multicultural and multigenerational leadership proficiency, social media fluency, learning agility, technology aptitude and the ability to think like a startup CEO. Together, we’ll explore these five pillars over the course of the next several articles.
So where can you begin? To start, you can join this webinar about Entrepreneurship in Crisis on Thursday, July 9th with David Gardner from Cofounders Capital. And, in just a few weeks, we’ll launch a white paper sharing effective strategies for creating success in today’s competitive and chaos-driven business environment. These resources will help you cut through the noise of bad advice and identify actionable solutions for your business.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you. It is my intention for this column to offer more than a one-sided conversation or a digital soapbox. Instead, let’s work together to create an open platform for feedback and engagement. What topics would you like to discuss? Does my perspective resonate with your own? What strategies have you found to identify business opportunities and growth as a leader? Let’s engage in honest conversations outside of this column so that we all can benefit in a true and powerful way from this journey we are about to embark on.
If you have questions and comments to share, or would like to be notified when the white paper is released, please connect with me on LinkedIn.
We’re going to learn a lot from each other. Let’s get started.
About the author
With two decades of experience growing and leading firms, Donald Thompson is a thought leader on goal achievement, influencing company culture and driving exponential growth. As an entrepreneur, Donald has led companies which have attained successful exits with strong returns for shareholders and employees. As a Certified Diversity Executive, Donald is a champion of Diversity and Inclusion initiatives and actively raises awareness and commitment.
Donald is currently CEO of Walk West, a digital marketing firm recently recognized by Inc. as the fastest growing agency in North Carolina for 2018 and 2019. In addition, Donald serves on boards for several organizations in the fields of technology, marketing, sports and entertainment and is a mentor for Google for Entrepreneurs Exchange.
A member of the National Speakers Association, Donald speaks frequently for businesses, organizations and universities and shares actionable insights and strategies across key functions of business strategy, entrepreneurship, leadership development, and diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Donald has written for multiple publications including Entrepeneur.com and CNBC.com and has published his own eBooks on decision making and diversity. To learn more, visit donaldthompson.com.