Today we’d like to introduce you to Thom Singer.
Hi Thom, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
When I was working in a sales and marketing career, I would attend many conferences. While sitting in the meeting room chairs, I would watch the speaker and think “Wow, he or she has a better job than I do”. Thus I began studying the business of speaking. When the great recession in 2009 left me laid off from a marketing job, I decided to go full time into the business of speaking. For eleven years I did well as a keynote speaker and master of ceremonies. Then came the pandemic and the live meetings business was shuttered for nearly 18 months. So I reinvented. While I am still a speaker, I now also do coaching, host podcasts for companies and associations, and I went to work for an executive search firm. My current story is one of doing several things to earn my living, but it is fun and challenging. And in reality, all those areas are in alignment.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Since going to work for myself in 2009 it has been a mix of good times and struggles. Aside from the challenges of working for self and needing to support a family, the recession and then then years later the pandemic, has taught me the need to be creative and scrappy. I have not been able to rely on anyone else to figure out the ups and downs of business. It is all on me. I have both had successes and failure. As I rebuild the speaking business now that the world is re-opening, I am stronger and smarter than I ever have been in my career. I am learning that my skills are transferable to a variety of areas, and thus I even when I have struggles I know there is a solution ahead.
Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I do two key things.
I work for Stanton Chase, a leading global executive search firm serving as trusted advisors to help companies build their senior leadership team. In this role I seek to connect with companies who are poised to grow and fill key top level roles. Executive search is a competitive industry. There are lots of options and many companies try to do their searches internally. But I have found from my year in this business that finding the right candidates is not easy, and when a search firm can assist in the process, companies can thrive. It seems to me those organizations who work with great search firms, always engage search consultants when need to make the right hire. What I love about this role is that it is about connecting people and opportunities, which is what I have been teaching as a speaker for over a dozen years. Additionally, Stanton Chase is the best company I have ever worked with in my career. The people are amazing and very welcoming and helpful to the new kid on the block.
As a speaker, coach, and podcaster I am focused on providing thought provoking information that allows people to see other points of view. My main keynote speech is about how people can connect better with people and create more “UnCommon Connections”. We all have countless likes, links, shares, and follows on our social media apps, but few of those people do we have regular communication. It is even more rare that we have cultivated long-term and mutually beneficial relationships where all parties work to help others succeed. When we have one or two “UnCommon Connections” it can make all the difference in finding career and life opportunities. But what if we could have five or six (or more) business relationships where all are committed to rising the tide for all boats. It is not easy or quick to cultivate these types of connections. And sadly, sometimes you will invest months or years on people will be “false friends” who are just takers (and it takes time to discover the reality of these “Talkers” who like to bring the drama). Creating “forever friendships” and keeping these relationships strong takes a plan.
As a podcaster, I am the “hired host” for several companies and associations who desire a good podcast for their organization, but do not have someone on staff to drive the process. Over the past seven years I have conducted over 1000 corporate interviews and have developed a high energy and fun conversational style of interviews.
Finally, I also work as a business development and career coach for lawyers (and other those who work in other professional services). Too often in a law practice a person reaches the highest levels without having learned how to create ongoing sales. Earlier in my career I spent five years as the director of marketing inside two large law firms. I have a good understanding of what a senior associate or junior partner needs to do to set the pattern for an ongoing lifetime practice.
While some may cringe at having several different income streams, after my experience in the pandemic and the in-person meeting world shutting down, this is what I had to do to be scrappy and map out a new path.
What are your plans for the future?
I am excited to get back to speaking at live events. The topic of “how do we connect again after the pandemic” is showing to be a popular topic. It is too important for companies and associations to help their people reset their networking and to cultivate more “UnCommon Connections” rather than just collecting links on social media.
It is also exciting to work with more companies who are looking to make strategic hires. Learning the business of executive search is complicated and I realize I still have a lot to learn. But I see this industry as one that has growth opportunities, as finding the right talent is more complicated than ever.
- Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://thomsinger.com
- Instagram: @thomsinger
- Twitter: @thomsinger