"Stepping Away From the Herd" by Karl Mecklenburg, Leadership & Motivational Speaker

Before I attended and spoke at the Global Speaker’s Summit in Cape Town South Africa, my family and I took a photo safari at Zulu Nyala. Zulu Nyala is a small but wonderful game reserve in the Kwa Zulu Natal Province of South Africa. Because of Zulu Nyala’s relatively small size there are no resident big cats on the reserve so the antelope, zebra, warthogs, wildebeest and Cape buffalo are plentiful and unafraid.

The reserve is named for an antelope called the Nyala. Nyala travel in twos or threes, were found throughout the reserve, and were the most common antelope we saw. Kudu are the largest antelope on the reserve. We saw a few of them including one impressive male with four foot long spiraling horns. The tiny Duikers are solitary and shy antelope. Red Duiker live in the forest while Gray Duiker live in the brush. Philemon, our Zulu guide, pointed them out to us a few times during our five days of game drives.

The antelope that interested me the most were the Impala. They live in larger herds than the others with fifteen to fifty Impala living together. Thin, graceful, and athletic, they jump, chase, and race about as they interact with each other. Their herds are either breeding herds containing one dominant male along with does and fawns or bachelor herds. The bachelor herds are populated by males who are not leaders of breeding herds.

There was a bachelor herd of Impala that lived along the main road to the lodge so we were able to watch them quite often. It contained thirty male Impala who looked amazingly the same. They were clones not only in appearance but also in activity. Like sheep they ate, rested, and played in unison. If one turned left they all turned left. If one lay down they all did.

I wonder if this is how many of us look to our clients or customers. Do they have trouble sorting you out from your twenty-nine competitors? With the economic downturn it’s more important than ever to separate yourself from the herd. Unfortunately many of us are hunkering down, cutting marketing budgets, and any innovative activities that might help us to stand out from the crowd. Now is the time to gain market share while the competition is waiting on the sidelines. Let your clients know how you differ from the herd and thrive despite the economy.

For more information or to book Karl Mecklenburg to speak at your event, click here.

About Karl Mecklenburg

Former Denver Broncos Captain and All-Pro Linebacker Karl Mecklenburg rose from being a college walk-on and a 12th round draft pick to a pro career that included six Pro Bowl and three Super Bowl appearances.  Considered the NFL’s most versatile player, Karl played all seven defensive front positions.  Bronco coaches wanted him at the point of attack and would move him throughout the game.  There were many games where Mecklenburg played all 7 positions in the course of a single game.

In 2001, Karl was inducted into the Denver Broncos Ring of Fame and the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame.

Karl is a member of the National Speakers Association.  He enjoys speaking to a variety of groups, and his story is both humorous and inspirational. The lessons life in the NFL taught him about teamwork, courage, dedication, desire, honesty and forgiveness, and goal setting are his “Six Keys to Success”. 

As a highly regarded speaker, Karl tailors his presentations to the needs of the group while teaching and inspiring his audience. His legendary NFL career draws many attendees to events, and the content and delivery of his presentation sends his audience home with a renewed commitment to their goals.

Since retiring from pro football in 1995, Karl divides his time between motivational speaking and his ongoing charity commitments.  Karl and his wife Kathi have three children.  The Mecklenburgs still live in Littleton, Colorado.

Mecklenburg has used his special brand of motivation as an assistant football coach at Kent Denver High School.  He has hosted a radio program, done television sideline reporting and studio work, and written columns for the Denver Post.  In addition, Karl has had numerous magazine articles published.  In 1987 he was the coauthor of Meck For The Defense, published by McGraw-Hill.

Karl’s latest book  Heart of a Student Athlete: All Pro Advice for Competitors and Their Families  has been awarded the Mom’s Choice Awards® Gold Recipient and the 2010 Mensa Sharp Writ Book Awards: Best Book for Young Adults.  For more information about this book, click on the tab “Karl’s Book” above, or go to www.studentathlete.us

The Mecklenburgs have had a strong commitment to many Colorado charities through the years, which they continue to uphold.  Karl and Kathi formed the Karl Mecklenburg REACH Foundation in 2006, in an effort to further impact the youth of Colorado.  REACH stands for rewarding experiences for all children.  The REACH for a Book program incentivizes Denver Public Schools elementary school students to read.  National statistics show that 90% of high school dropouts can’t read.  DPS has a graduation rate of 49%.  By challenging elementary school students and rewarding them for reading 100 minutes a week we will change these numbers.

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