We had the good fortune of connecting with Kevin T. Robertson (KTR) and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kevin T. Robertson (KTR), how do you think about risk?
Trailblazers, mavericks & pioneers are all extreme risk takers and I’m no different. Most people are risk averse and let fear demolish their ambitions, control their desires and crush their dreams. I don’t like being controlled by anything and I’m ultra competitive. “My attitude towards risk is f%ck it, I’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain’. All I have to do is keep working through the pain of sacrifice, getting better at my craft and the payoff is going to be huge. At the very least, I feel like the learning lessons from each risk I take have made me stronger to deal with the next one. Having more courage stored up for each battle in business is very necessary. You will be challenged each step of the way. I make it a habit to stay prepared and research my investment opportunities and business ventures to prevent unnecessary losses. Human resources are your biggest asset. You can always make more money, however quality relationship assets are very difficult to come by. I make investments in relationships and take chances on the right people. One characteristic that has always allowed me to take risks without fear is my ability to make quick decisions from the gut. I don’t waste time asking people for permission to live my dreams. I do what I want, when I want and exactly the way I want to do it. I live free like a free spirit should!! The only way to do that is… practice freedom of expression and master overcoming obstacles. Bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. You must also understand… bigger the risk, bigger the fall when the sh%t doesn’t work. Live and learn. Forget about other people’s opinions and judgements. Focus all your energy on the big prize after you take the risk. What kind of reward are you looking for? My bounce back capability has always been high after a fall. I keep driving the main goal until I reach the objective of my destination. My instinct for business has been there from the start, since I was about 11 years old. I knew I wanted more and the neighborhood I grew up in wasn’t creating the opportunities that matched this big dream I had in my head. Big vision requires big risk, a lot of guts and big balls. For some reason I have always walked toward the “hot flames” and could withstand the pressure. I always respond with action when a fire is under my ass. It increases my desire to achieve more. I come from a background of lack, very little money and the odds stacked up against me, just like many people who attempt great feats in business. Failure & risk is just part of the process. I embrace every step of the process and have become masterful at business management. The level of belief in my talents and abilities has always been greater than my fears. I’m addicted to taking risks and the reward system that I know will be there in the end. I either learn, or advance. I wouldn’t recommend the kind of chances I’ve taken to anyone else because we all have to find our own path. Risk is customized for each person’s situation. I have also suffered heavy losses… but you learn from those failures and the biggest risk you take have the most valuable lessons. Recovering from heavy losses after risk actually improves your decision making skills. In the beginning I started with nothing. I didn’t come this far to incur all these losses to wind up with nothing, so I keep taking risks until I strike gold. You only have to get it right one time to start building life changing momentum. It was never my intention from the start to play small. I play big, think big and stand tall to reap the big rewards after I bust my ass to build an empire with staying power and an entrepreneurial career that’s all about longevity & sustainability. I serve as CEO at Speakerfocus.com. We operate a multi-million dollar professional development company helping speakers scale up to the high 6 & 7 figures. We have taken calculated risk and won big after going through our fair share of growing pains. Risk is all about investing in something you believe in, overcoming challenges, being patient, analyzing data, acquiring the right resources and capitalizing off the right opportunities. Risk vs reward is a no brainer for me. Take risk, more risk and extreme risk. Put it all on the line… because you only live this business life one time. Get the most out of each decision and live your dreams to the fullest.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Please tell us more about your business. I am a thought leader and subject matter expert in the field of leadership development. I have been a professional speaker in my industry for over 35 years. I started fresh out of high school at 17 years of age. I’m also a celebrity insider, working in the capacity as a top consultant and trusted advisor for some of the biggest brands, high profile athletes, entertainers and high net worth business professionals in the world. I provide management services and design learning tools that keep my client based organized and focused on next level results. Magnifying success in their personal & professional vision is what mission has been from day one. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. The thing I take the most pride in is built on the foundation of serving other people. I have always placed a huge emphasis on making sure I get other people results. You are not a true leader unless you teach other people what you know and show them how to achieve success as well. The world of serving other people has no place for selfish behavior. A true leader must have the willingness to share all their gifts and talents for the greater benefit so all humans can flourish. When you are successful and develop a system where others can eat off your overflow… then you know you are leaving a positive legacy that will last forever. I take pride waking up each day, working on building a legacy that is a genuine and authentic blueprint for success How did you get to where you are today business-wise. I graduated from high school in 1986. I did not attend college, however I have attended over 276 personal & professional development seminars over the course of my career. I’m addicted to new information and love doing research. I have toured the world in the conference industry as a professional speaker, delivering 2700+ onsite training programs, to over 30 plus countries and have serviced over 78 different nationalities. My gift of communication has allowed me to also work with sign language, hearing impaired and multi-cultural interpreters. My work books and training materials have been translated into over 30 different languages. My talent for writing is a large part of my success. Writing copy for books, designing curriculum, ads for social media and helping my coaching students on the Speakerfocus.com platform is my number one skill I utilize each day. I would not be where I am, if I did not keep working on my writing skills. It’s the #1 tool in my entrepreneurial arsenal. It’s all about connecting with people through beautiful word sequences and getting your messaging across in an effective way. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? Hell No! My path was filled with the obvious pitfalls and challenges. I was at a huge disadvantage just because of my age when I first started in business. Although I was a professional musician by the age of 16, I still had a lot to learn about life and business. I tried and failed at many business ventures until I found solid footing as a professional speaker, business consultant & speaker coach. The biggest thing was establishing credibility to start my career, gaining experience and going through tough, devastating financial turmoil. I have overcome multiple foreclosures, car repossessions, bankruptcies and being broken mentally & spiritually many times. The main lesson I learned with all of these losses was… I needed a better marketing machine that would generate high revenue with predictability & consistency. No matter how bad things were, even when my life was falling apart.. I never gave up on my dream. At the end of the day I set out to become a successful entrepreneur and the best CEO I could be. I never took my eye off that goal. I embrace change. Overcoming daily, weekly, monthly and yearly obstacles is just the cost to do business. I’m willing to pay the price for the things I want. Freedom ain’t free, so you have got to decide what price you are willing to pay. The cost of huge success is always high. You can’t have it all, or keep it all, so decide what you want to hold onto and live with the outcome. Life is contradictory and forever evolving, so I stay open minded and enjoy the journey while I’m working towards my goals. What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. Time + Money = Lifestyle. Soon as my parents told me at the age of 16 that I would no longer have a curfew… I knew right then that I wanted to maintain control over my time. I have always placed a priority on controlling my time and not letting other people do that. That’s why a 9-5 job was never a part of my long term plan. I was against anything that did not allow me to do the things I wanted to do, so I spent endless hours studying how to become the best entrepreneur I could be. Doing things that are important, focusing on priorities and living a fulfilled life is why I only participate in activities that support, or uplift my vision. Everything else to me is not a necessity. If it doesn’t compliment me living my dream and having fun doing it… I’m simply not interested. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? I want people to understand that success is not just for lucky people. I’m not lucky. I work hard and achieve the results I get for a reason. I have studied the top 3% of the most successful people in the world of business for over 30 plus years. Success leaves a trail of clues. Learn from the best in your industry and then add your own flair. In the end… I put myself in position to win because I do things other people find extremely uncomfortable, or don’t believe they can achieve. I believe in the formattable laws of this universe and I believe in myself. Supreme confidence in my skills and abilities is my most practiced daily affirmation. Complaining is a bad habit and a huge waste of energy. Confidence crushes indecision and that’s why I make doing research a part of my daily routine. When you lose confidence you are pretty much at a stand still. I can’t afford to sit in one place for too long, so confidence is one of my greatest assets. It empowers me to stay on the move and feel electrified. I study success habits and keep replacing old behaviors with new behaviors, getting better each day. I’m a work in progress and always willing to upgrade my skills. I’m just a curly headed kid from Capitol Heights, MD who wanted to get on a plane and travel the world and that’s exactly what I’ve done. And so can you. My story isn’t special, but my journey is!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
When I’m not in the Dallas Fort Worth area hanging out with my longtime friend and attorney Ward White IV, I also love downtown Austin, It’s one of my favorite spots in TX. I frequent The Westin Austin Downtown which is one of my favorite hotels brands. My morning exercise routine will consist of either a long walk, jogging at Lady Bird Lake, or renting some kayaks, or canoes. After working up an appetite stopping past a BBQ spot like, Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden is a must. They have great food and always spot on with the right blend of beverage and simple cuisine. A business trip for me usually consists of a lot of zoom meetings, so working from the rooftop during the day at one of our high rise buildings gives you a breathtaking view of the city that breaks up the monotony for sure. Nightlife in downtown Austin is lit… so I check out different spots each night so I can keep creating more memories and go back to the spots where I had the most fun.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First, I want to thank my family for their undying support system. My dreams would have died a long time ago without their help. Yes, I have had countless friends and business associates that have played a big part in my success. The list is too long to name, however valuable relationships are never forgotten and they quality ones know who they are because we stay connected. I want to give special thanks to international keynote speaking celebrity & legend, Mr. Les Brown. He saw something in me very early in my Professional Speaking career and gave me an opportunity to shine. He invited me to speak at an event he was hosting called: “Motivational Monday”. As a result from that event, I hosted a 12 part leadership series on the International Dream TV Network. Also acquired my first fortune 500 client. Big pharmaceutical giant Bristol Myers Squibb. Les Brown was the first big name speaker who believed in me and I’m forever grateful.
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