Translating Hard Challenges Into Big-time Successes

Karl Pisor has a humble, down-to-earth quality that almost fools you into thinking he’s a regular guy. Don’t fall for it. He’s actually a Renaissance Man searching for the next Renaissance.

Born in Detroit, Karl’s journey into the broader world began with a year in France as a high school exchange student. “Honestly, I had no idea what I was getting into,” he recalls. “But the more French I learned, the more fun I had, and the more friends I made. Detroit was just too small after that.”

After a deep dive into liberal arts at Haverford College in Philadelphia (where he studied both literature and physics—a tribute to his curiosity and well-roundedness), he set out for Japan, where he planned to master Japanese the same way he had taken on French. “I thought ‘how hard could Japanese be?’ After all, I had French well in hand after about six months.”

Karl Pisor with his family

Like many foreigners before him, Karl was greeted by the immense complexity of the Japanese language. This would be no cakewalk.

“I was young and stupid,” he laughs. “But I was making progress. And little by little, I started to overcome the language hurdles and have fun.” After a year of teaching English, he committed to an intensive Japanese language school in Yokohama, where he was able to take his Japanese to the next level. The opportunities began to multiply.

Realizing how well-positioned he was as a fluent Japanese speaker during the dot-com explosion, Karl launched an internet design shop in Tokyo at the age of 27. “I loved the freedom of running my own business,” he says. “But I was quickly exhausted. From managing employees and cashflow to marketing the company and hustling for new business, each day brought a new set of problems.”

Like so many entrepreneurs, Karl began to feel adrift, overwhelmed, and unable to focus. Just two years into his business, he lost everything when the internet bubble of 2000 burst. “I was heartbroken,” he says. “Successful entrepreneurship clearly required more than just passion, so I decided to take a step back and really learn the fundamentals before I started my next business venture.”

After completing an MBA at the University of California, Berkeley, he returned to Japan, where he spent the next 15 years as an independent management consultant, delivering solutions in IT infrastructure, sales, marketing, and application development. “I had many successes during that time, but something was missing,” Karl says. “I wanted to build my clients up in a lasting way, but my consulting work seemed to only be addressing surface issues. That’s when I discovered EOS®.”

Japanese Traction
Karl with the new Japanese translation of Traction

The EOS tools and process integrated everything Karl had learned about running a successful business into one coherent philosophy and system. Realizing that EOS had the power to deliver incredible value to his entrepreneurial clients, Karl then made his next big move: in 2018, he became Japan’s first Professional EOS Implementer®.

Today, Karl lives the EOS Life® by helping business leaders throughout East Asia and Oceania. “Every day, I work with entrepreneurs who remind me of myself 20 years ago,” he says. “They start with a vision, then struggle with the reality of building a successful business. They’re consumed with personnel and profitability issues, and they feel like their business runs them instead of the other way around.”

Karl solves those issues by helping entrepreneurs move past their “hit the ceiling” moments. He loves how EOS solves deep organizational problems from the ground up, rather than by applying band-aids. He thrives on helping entrepreneurs get more of what they want from their businesses. And his clients appreciate the fact that in addition to speaking English and Japanese, he also speaks entrepreneurship—with strong fluency in sales, marketing, IT systems, and software development.

The EOS GWC™️ Tool written out in Japanese

As one of Karl’s former colleagues says, “Karl is committed to investing in people. He attentively listens to team members in order to effectively teach, motivate, and encourage them. And he explains complex solutions so that everyone from the office manager to the CEO is on the same page.”

“All of my life has been a learning journey,” Karl says. “So it’s fitting that today I can help others in their learning journeys.”

If you’re ready to speak the language of entrepreneurial success in Japan, South Korea, Manila, Sydney, and beyond, Karl is ready to help you translate your most significant challenges into your biggest opportunities.

Traction, Japan Release, Share a free copy today!

Subscribe to the EOS Blog

What region are you attending from?

Skip to content