Thank you for visiting my site. I’m an entrepreneur, writer and speaker, and this is a place where I share information about the topics and projects I care about. I am particularly passionate about transformational leadership and organisational change, and enjoy helping fellow business owners, executive teams and CEOs get the best out of their people, especially in the midst of rapid political, environmental and socio-economic change. In this line of work I am often invited to offer business commentary for industry publications, on TV and on radio.
In 2006, after a short and colourful career in sales (that included peddling welding machines and earth-moving machinery spares), I took the entrepreneurial plunge and started a company called Cerebra. With a specialist focus on digital content and engagement, Cerebra won numerous multinational accounts and grew quickly to become South Africa’s leading social media agency. In my role as CEO of the business I had the privilege of working with Coca-Cola, Samsung, Toyota, Vodafone, AB InBev, Google, Ford, Huawei, Barclays, and many other remarkable brands. Cerebra was acquired by global advertising giant WPP in 2013.
In 2007 I co-founded a web start-up called Afrigator.com that was acquired by Naspers just 18 months later. Around the same time, I began hosting a popular networking event called the 27dinners, which went on to catalyse business collaborations and relationships through hundreds of successful events.
A big thank you to the talented team at Epitome for some of the photographs on this site.
Talks and Facilitation
I’ve spoken at over 300 conferences, corporate functions and industry events both locally and abroad, and facilitated a variety of workshops for over 40 major brands. I talk on the subjects I know best – media, social business, consumer behaviour, communication, marketing, advertising and branding – but am also happy to tailor content to your requirement.
Click on the link below to request a quotation for the format of your choice: a TED-style 20 minute presentation, a 45 minute keynote presentation, or a 3 hour (or full day) workshop facilitation.
Click through to read recent blog posts and articles below.
Mike was a keynote speaker at our recently held Digital Ignition Symposium. Mike was given the unfortunate graveyard shift but due to the insightful, enthusiastic and passionate way in which Mike delivered his talk made it the most interactive and interesting session of conference. He is one of the most dynamic speakers I have seen in a long time.
I watched Mike speak at an IMCConference on social media for business. Mike is an absolute pleasure to watch and listen to, his energy is addictive and he has the experience to back up his success. I’d happily attend another event to see Mike speak again.
Mike has spoken at a number of our IMC Conference events in JHB and CPT. We do extensive post event reviews from our delegates and Mike always performs in the top tier of speakers. His presentation skills are world class and the content always relevant to our conference theme and delegates expectations. Mike Rocks!
Linda van der Merwe
Having the pleasure of listening to Mike addressing – amongst others – the topic of personal branding, the word “extreme” came to mind when I think of him. Not only an extremely entertaining and engaging speaker, but truly gifted with being extremely knowledgeable.
Mike is a one of the most insightful people in the industry I’ve had the pleasure to work with. Not only does he have a global perspective on social media, marketing, and business that is compelling, but he has clearly made it actionable in South Africa. It was terrific to work with him and his team to help deliver Social Business Africa 2013.
I organised TEDxPretoria on 27 September 2013 where I invited Mike to be a speaker and share his ‘Idea worth spreading’. Although he also had another event on the same day he showed up early, enthused ready for action. Mike not only has amazing talent as a presenter, he is also knowledgeable and passionate. I would definitely recommend him.