Elizabeth Allen is the principal of MarketSmartz, a consulting firm based in Kansas City, Missouri. A passionate entrepreneur and self-employed from the age of 25, Elizabeth has worked in every facet of strategic market planning, national brand execution and executive sales management. She has served as a facilitator for The Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac for Entrepreneurs program and as a mentor for the University of Kansas MBA Graduates Program.
Elizabeth has consulted as a marketing expert for projects with Sprint, IBM, 3M, and Pfizer, and is a founding member of the Kansas City United Way Women’s Leadership Council.
A frequent speaker, Elizabeth is a business thought leader who delivers cutting-edge insights and very practical advice on how everyone must “think like an entrepreneur” even if they aren’t sure they want to be one.
Over the past decade, she has identified a convergence in the “gig economy” that will impact both employees and employers in unexpected ways. This research readily supports the idea that the “employee is the new customer” and who you know is the answer to uncovering the 80% of jobs not posted.
Elizabeth’s philanthropic interests include a sincere commitment to our nation’s unemployed and those in transition as she has served weekly those in transition at Church of the Resurrection for the past ten years. Her observation that people need consistent accountability, prayer and group support to thrive in today’s economy has been a defining element in her personal ministry as a follower of Jesus Christ.
She has been invited to present to the highest levels of the U.S. Military and now is presenting her work through University course offerings. She currently serves Benedictine College as Entrepreneur in Residence and is working with students to incorporate much needed measurable skill development into everyday internships.
She believes entrepreneurism is America’s birthright and our most precious competitive advantage in a rapidly evolving global economy.
I started as an information technology recruiter in 1979 with a focus on the contract‐for‐hire methodology. Pursuing my passion for executive recruiting I launched Alternative Search in 1984 focusing on information technology and C-level search engagements.
In 1987 I gained a reputation for connecting people regardless of their personal or professional stations in life. By the end of the decade, I came to be known as The Connector. Business owners/leaders who recognize that “relationships” are a major contributor to their company's success hired me to introduce them to other like‐minded business owners/leaders.
NOTE: Relationship creation and nurturing are not to be confused with networking, which is nothing more than ”card swapping”.
In 2008 I created the Executive Agent (EA) methodology. I used this to manage the careers of executive operators in much the same fashion that professional agents represent the interests of actors and athletes. With the support of a research team, I did everything from identifying and pursuing EA client opportunities to negotiating the terms and conditions of each engagement. Also, as an alternative to outplacement services, I began providing “unorthodox” career management counseling and transition support services to displaced employees of companies at every professional level.
At the start of 2015, I became acquainted with many military veterans and their unique post-service employment transition. Through introductions, I uncovered an urgent need for a paradigm shift in how veterans and employers viewed each other. In analyzing this need, I defined a methodology by which veterans can create and secure the opportunities they deserve.
In 2017 my business partner, Elizabeth Allen Founder of Economy of One, and I created a ten-week workshop, Creating Opportunities vs. Chasing Jobs that is successfully delivered to the private sector, military, colleges, and universities. A self-guided version is now available on YouTube.
As a Kansas City native, my wife Danita and I have two daughters and five grandchildren. My interests are my faith, family, golf, and creating measurable value for all I encounter.