Mr. Willis is the chief executive officer of Leadership Surge in Chicago, Illinois. He provides leadership development programs that train employees in the trade industry to become frontline leaders, helping push companies forward through future challenges. Previously, Mr. Willis had a successful career in financial services, pharmaceutical sales and business development. At Northwestern Mutual, he ranked third in sales production for the southern region. Mr. Willis ranked fifth in the nation for Eli Lilly in marketing total portfolio sales. He has successfully raised over $1.5 million for start- up companies and has been instrumental in creating strategy and vision for leadership within these companies. After identifying a need for frontline leadership in the trade industry, Mr. Willis has spent the last 15 years working with companies to improve leadership culture. Leadership Surge values people over process and focuses on a holistic, strengths-based approach to leadership. Mr. Willis has worked directly with more than 1,200 foreman leaders, helping them improve in areas such as diversity, equity and inclusion, effective communication, performance coaching, work-life balance, stress management, generational leadership, critical thinking and time management. He understands the trade industry’s underlying challenges in profitability, performance, labor and productivity and how they have the potential to derail growth. Mr. Willis competed as a walk-on player for the Florida Gators at the University of Florida and was a member of the 1996 National Championship football team. Through his hard work and dedication, he received a full scholarship and was elected team captain in 2000. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, he played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers under Coach Tony Dungy. Following his career with the Buccaneers, Mr. Willis received a master’s degree in entertainment business from Full Sail University.
- Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
- Emotional Intelligence
- Leading People for Results