While attending college in Florida, Jeff Whittle was a reporter and editor for a daily newspaper. The Pointer Institute offered him a 12-week fellowship upon graduation. Through the fellowship, Whittle was able to see not only the reporting side but also the business side of media. He went on to work as a reporter at the Tampa Bay Times, covering the police, fire, sheriff and customs beats.

(Photo Courtesy of Jeff Whittle)

(Photo Courtesy of Jeff Whittle)

Whittle was intrigued by the First Amendment. Law and media were very much in the forefront of the public’s mind with the newly released movie “All the President’s Men.”

Upon receiving his JD degree from Vanderbilt, Whittle moved his family to Dallas and started his commercial litigation practice.

Whittle decided that 15 years was long enough to practice commercial litigation. He was asked to help a company with sales for a cutting-edge technology, a web platform to create staffing solutions for law firms. This started a new way for companies to connect to potential employees.

Moving on, Whittle became the CEO at Royal Cameron Corporation and oversaw the business operations of an educational furniture manufacturing company. While being the CEO, Whittle went back to school and earned an MBA online from the University of Florida, then he left Royal and started his own firm, Cogris.

Cogris is a boutique consulting company that works with business owners and leadership teams to help build a better business.

His three-prong approach to help businesses succeed is tailored to the individual business and business owner. The first prong is teaching an entrepreneur operating system for running a business. The second prong is to facilitate the board of directors to help companies get non-competitive feedback to enable to them to create a strategic plan to succeed. The third prong is executive coaching by working one-on-one with business owners to get them farther, faster.

“It was very humbling returning to school after a 20+ year gap,” said Whittle. “It’s easy to get lots of experience, but the educational components of business are complicated. It’s very valuable to get an MBA. If you can communicate, you have an advantage. There are a ton of things to learn.”

Robin D. Everson is a native Chicagoan who resides in Dallas, Texas. Her appreciation for art, food, wine, people and places has helped her become a well-respected journalist. A life-long lover of education, Robin seeks to learn and enlighten others about culture. You can find her work at Examiner.com