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Meet Amir Ghannad of The Ghannad Group

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amir Ghannad.

Amir, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My story is one of being the beneficiary of God’s grace and the generosity of so many friends, family members, colleagues and strangers who have helped me achieve much success and fulfillment in my life.

I grew up in Iran and came to the US at the age of 16 on my own with a very limited English vocabulary, limited resources, and hope for a brighter future. Since those days, I have been blessed to have gotten a good education and great experiences. I was fortunate enough to have gotten a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech and an MBA from Wilmington University, I worked for three major corporations in the US, Thailand, and Germany and retried in December 2016 to work as an independent consultant, speaker, and trainer in the area of leadership development and workplace culture transformation.

I married my wife, Connie, who is from Decatur, GA in 1981 and we have two wonderful kids who are 27 and 29 years old and very actively involved in our consulting practice.

I learned early on in my career in manufacturing that my passion was in empowering and energizing my team members, rather than trying to master everything they already knew so I could tell them what to do. I decided early on to trust my instincts and always find ways to do my job, whether I was a maintenance manager or a plant manager, in a way that honed my capabilities at empowering people and bringing out the best in them.

Along the way, as I held various positions in several regions in the world, I was deployed to multiple business turnaround situations and managed to make a difference and learn a lot at the same time.

One of the most rewarding of these turnarounds happened right here in Atlanta when I assumed responsibility for a plant that had been overwhelmed and was delivering unacceptable results following an acquisition that placed much higher demands on the plant than they previously used to. We managed to come together as a team and turn the plant around from being the worst to being the best in the company and our morale went through the roof. The most rewarding part of the experience was that we not only restored a sense of pride in our employees and created a work environment that was collaborative and supportive, we made sure that employees were coached and supported in improving their lives outside of work. As a result, people were getting out of debt, getting their health and relationships restored, and much more.

In 2015, after having designed and conducted hundreds of training sessions and having written hundreds of articles on post-it notes and other notebooks, my daughter urged me to begin the process of publishing a book, which is something I had always talked about and had not taken action on. She took over the project and guided me through the process and handled many of the details related to getting my book, The Transformative Leader, published. Since then, we have shipped the book to over 18 countries and have received an abundance of positive feedback about the difference it has made in people’s personal and professional lives. The book is available at

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I always say “nothing bad has ever happened to me because everything that seemed like a bad thing turned out to result into something good.” Having said that, I have come across a number of challenges along the way.

Personally, when I first came to the US, I had no family and faced a number of challenges in getting settled and finding a place to live, etc. I was viciously attacked and beaten by a group of locals in the suburbs of Boston, MA where I went to high school, and later faced a very dangerous situation where I went to college in South Georgia during the hostage crisis in 1979.

Professionally, I have been involved in several situations where I was challenged to figure out a way to be better and more effective at what I did. I have had bosses who were true servant leaders and I learned a great deal from them. I have also had bosses who had no idea how to be leaders and I can clearly see the purpose they served in my life and career.

From time to time I had to make tough choices to say no to opportunities simply because I wanted to stay true to my values and principles or spend more time with my family. In some cases, those choices came at a short term cost but it was well worth it because first things must always be first and in every case, my career bounced right back.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the The Ghannad Group. story. Tell us more about the business.
Our mission is to put people in touch with their greatness so they fulfill their unique purpose in the world. We do that by conducting training sessions, delivering keynotes, holding workshops, coaching, and consulting with small to medium size companies.

Our specialty is leadership development and workplace culture transformation, with a great deal of emphasis on self-awareness as a starting point.

We work with leaders to help them transform themselves into servant leaders and their workplace cultures into High Commitment Cultures. We also work with individual contributors and people from all walks of life to help them find the Transformative Leader within and create extraordinary results and fulfillment from right where they are.

We have consistently received extremely positive feedback on just how practical our approach is and how our clients can immediately put what they learn or discover into action and deliver tangible results. Although we have countless reports on successes people have experienced professionally as a result of participating in our workshops, what we are most proud of is that people always talk about the profound difference their participation has made in their personal lives when it comes to their relationships and the peace of mind that they feel, etc.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I believe we have a lot of control over just how much luck we experience in our lives. We are always surrounded by opportunities and when we are focused on capitalizing on them and we have done adequate preparations, we feel like we are lucky. In that sense, I would say, I have had a tremendous amount of luck when all of my preparations and my focus caused me to recognize and capitalize on some of the opportunities.

In our business, we have been extremely fortunate in that all of our business has come through word of mouth and I continue to be approached by potential clients and strategic partners. So I consider myself extremely lucky in business as well.


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