Time to Get Tough: Unconventional Lessons in Leadership

Time to Get Tough: Unconventional Lessons in Leadership

Michael J. Coles, the co-founder of the Great American Cookie Company and the former CEO of Caribou Coffee, did not follow a conventional path into business.

He does not have an Ivy League pedigree or an MBA from a top-ten business school. He grew up poor, starting work at the age of thirteen. He had many false starts and painful defeats, but Coles has a habit of defying expectations. His life and career have been about turning obstacles into opportunities, tragedies into triumphs, and poverty into philanthropy.

In this webinar, brought to you by the KSU Executive MBA Program, Coles and Dr. Catherine Lewis (co-author of his new book, Time to Get Tough: How Cookies, Coffee, and a Crash Led to Success in Business and Life) will share:

  • how to use failure as fuel
  • how to use the last five miles to prepare you for the next five miles
  • ten essential leadership lessons that will help you succeed in any personal or business endeavor.

About the Coles College of Business:
The Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University is the third-largest business school in the state of Georgia, admitting only juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Coles College is among the top 2 percent of business schools worldwide that maintain accreditation in both business and accounting by AACSB International, the world’s largest accreditation association for business schools.

About the KSU Executive MBA Program:
The Coles Executive MBA Program at Kennesaw State University integrates executive-level business tools across broad management platforms enabling its graduates to make confident strategic decisions. Our program combines the business acumen you are looking for and the leadership and professional skills you need to get ahead.

About the Speakers

Michael J. Coles is an Atlanta business executive, serial entrepreneur, education advocate, well-known public speaker, and the namesake of the Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University. He co-founded Great American Cookies in Atlanta in 1977 and grew it into the largest cookie store franchise in the US. Coles’s commitment to community service led him to run for the House of Representatives in 1996 and the U.S. Senate in 1998. Coles recently stepped down as chairman of Brand Holding Company and BrandBank and actively lectures about business, giving more than seventy-five talks a year at universities and corporate events nationwide. 

Dr. Catherine M. Lewis is Assistant Vice President of Museums, Archives & Rare Books; director of the Museum of History and Holocaust Education; and professor of history at Kennesaw State University. She is the author, co-editor, or coauthor of fourteen books and curator of more than 40 exhibitions for organizations around the nation including the Atlanta History Center, Delta Air Lines, the United Way, the Breman Museum, and Augusta National Golf Club. 

About the Author

The KSU Executive MBA in the Coles College of Business is more than a degree; it’s an experience. Our program teaches leadership and business acumen, but it also digs deep to uncover your strengths, goals and personal brand. At Coles you’ll experience cutting–edge global teaming, program-long executive coaching and an integrated curriculum designed for professionals ready to advance their career. When you’re ready to be a commanding business leader you are ready for the KSU EMBA.