Graduate of the Week: Mike Meier, Author and World Traveler

When Mike Meier finished his last Leadership Institute training in 2002, Twitter was something birds did and the epicenter of social networking was a coffee shop, not Facebook.

Despite the revolutionary changes since then, Mike has published a well-received business book and founded a consulting business with help from the skills he learned at Institute trainings. "LI showed me how to capitalize on meeting new people, keep in touch with them, and organize those contacts," he explained.

Mike attended five LI trainings in 2002: Broadcast Journalism School, Capitol Hill Writing School, Effective TV Techniques Workshop, Public Speaking Workshop, and LI’s flagship Youth Leadership School. He also received the Institute's Balance in Media Grant.

Only a month after graduating from Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Illinois with a degree in Mass Communication, Mike was hired as a sports anchor and reporter. "I did that for about six months, and then gave it up," he said. "I landed the ‘dream job,’ but later found out it wasn't my dream!"

Instead he pursued an MBA degree at Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth, Texas, and with the degree under his belt, he traveled to China, living and working there for a year. He drew upon his experience there and upon his return, he developed 14 business tips for those seeking to do business in China, which are published in his book— A Focused Pursuit in China: 14 Business Tips To Know Before You Go.

Mike also used his experience to launch his own consulting business, Focused Pursuit LLC., which "helps clients achieve their personal and professional goals," ranging from general consulting to public speaking training. He also hosts "seminars for small and large companies alike about Chinese business culture." Mike recently finished working one year in South Korea, and just signed a contract with a Korean technology firm.

Mike will never forget his LI training. "I would describe attending LI [trainings] to first timers [as a] great opportunity to meet smart, driven individuals that want to change the world.  For me, going to school in the Midwest and coming to DC for a weekend is a treat in itself.  It's one of the greatest cities in the world, and that's why I returned four more times!"

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