As a start-up, every move is critical.  Michael Johnson helped us make the right strategic moves.

As a business advisor, he worked closely with us to craft and tune a crisp, tight strategy focused on our target market.  He remains faithfully focused on the client need, even when cool technology pops in to distract everyone.  When challenges occur, he has an amazing ability to crystalize the specific issue that needs a solution, which helps us apply finite resources in the best way.  His practical and straightforward approach is refreshing … and highly effective.

While Michael was an advisor we ultimately achieved 20%-40% quarterly growth in our core markets. As an attractive target, based in part on our growth and market positioning, our company was acquired in 2013.

James Alexander, CEO, Vizibility


Michael is a bright, original thinker who proved to be very helpful as we were exploring the creation of a new virtual solution for executive coaching. We were new to the virtual world and Michael provided straight-forward, honest, and practical information that enabled us to choose the right path forward. The system we have created has transformed the way we and our human resources clients think about talent development tools.

Kathy Green, President, Executive Coaching Connections


In 2010, we started an investigation into ways to encourage using digital dictionaries into the classroom.  Michael provided his guidance, market experience and technology expertise. By closely listening and then engaging us in a rich and candid conversation, he played a significant role in moving us forward.

He helped us uncover the full potential of a key insight:  that our real value lies in providing definitions when and where they are wanted, and not in simply providing a dictionary, whether in print or digital form.  That clarified our path and how to get there, which led to the products we have in the market today.

What’s different about Michael is his respectful attitude toward clients. He listens carefully and respectfully and then builds on, rather than sets aside, the effort a client put into the problem. It makes his recommendations far more actionable and adds tremendous value to his services.

John Morse, President and Publisher, Merriam-Webster Inc. 


What’s extraordinary about Michael Johnson is the incredibly simple and direct way that he identifies and presents solutions.

At Follett Library Resources (FLR), he solved the very important problem of creating the first e-books for FLR to sell.  His updates on this project and others were straightforward and no nonsense.  He gives the best presentation that I have ever seen with a highly intelligent and entertaining style.  You always learn something and enjoy the education.

As we work together today, he continues to impress me with his crisp insight to solving problems and sense of humor.  It’s always a pleasure working with Michael.
Ross Follett, Author and President and CEO of the Follett Library and School Group (Retired)


Michael offers a completely different consulting experience.  I’ve hired many consultants over the years and that experience has not been good.  They usually impress everyone at first and then things change.  Working with Michael was the complete opposite.  His recommendations were worth every dime and he truly focused on our interests.

We had a great product idea, but little knowledge of the target market.  Michael helped us shape our strategy to enter the market and opened doors at the highest levels of companies within that market.  He was involved in every strategic decision, especially after we understood his character.  He has the highest integrity and meets his commitments, which built high trust with us.  Michael even served as our spokesperson due to his dynamic speaking style and strong ability to read a room.

Michael is one of those special business people where you plan on a long-term relationship.  I will always greet him warmly.

Tim Dickerson, Co-founder, Bookstep.com


Michael successfully worked with us to identify a content management system for our educational content that saved us time and money.  To help us identify a flexible, easy-to-use solution, he asked the right questions, looked at the right data and used it all to come up with the best answer.  His counsel on this project, as well as others, always included succinct advice at key decision points.

Michael also works well with people.  He has a gift for simple and direct explanations of complex strategy and technology issues.  He uses rich analogies to illustrate points, which are enlightening and enjoyable.  In addition, everyone knows him in the education world, so he has an unusually wide and deep network of contacts.  It’s incredibly valuable for networking, research and opening doors for new solutions.

As a consultant, Michael brings many gifts to the table to help companies move forward.  That’s his magic.

Hugh Roome, Executive Vice President, Scholastic

Michael helped us over the last 10 years with both direction and guidance in the digital and educational arena.  His strength is keeping a clear-cut, objective view of a situation and identifying how existing resources can be applied to move forward.
He truly seeks to understand a problem and guide you to a resolution.  At our first informal meeting, he took the time to give me and my colleague what was basically a seminar on the education market and offered immediate solutions for our challenges.
Michael’s guidance has included how to align with education industry standards.  He also helped us rethink our Writers of the Future program, advising us to have professors sign up for sample kits instead of a blanket mailing.  It saved us thousands of dollars.
From day one, it was clear that he cares about me and my company.  Michael solves challenges and he makes the connection personal.
Juliet Wills, Vice President of Sales, Galaxy Press

Common Sense Business Principles
Founder Michael Johnson, Professional Speaker