Joseph Ashford founded K4 Global in 2014 and continues to serve as the firm’s non-executive chairman. K4 Global is a multi-dimensional firm based in London that serves clients throughout the world.
Before founding K4 Global, Joseph Ashford held positions at varying levels within companies across multiple industries. His experiences as both an employee and a C-level executive lend him unique perspectives into the inner workings of businesses and how they best function. These perspectives have proven invaluable as Ashford leads K4 Global in the assistance it provides to clients.
K4 Global offers a variety of services that reflect Ashford’s personal expertise and the knowledge of his team. At the firm, Ashford regularly heads projects that are focused on VIP concierge service, public relations, global connectivity, event management, crisis management, security and strategic marketing. The firm is well-versed in media ventures, including both music and film undertakings.
Joseph Ashford is a member of PRCA and speaks three languages: French, Spanish and English. Recently he sat down with this publication to discuss his background and career.
Where did the idea for K4 Global come from?
I saw a need for an investment firm that looked outside of the traditional format. At K4 Global, we bring our team’s expertise and passion to custom-designed investment opportunities in a wide range of industry sectors.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I look for a good work-life balance. I’m not the kind of entrepreneur that puts in 18 hour days. I think you can be just as productive if you come to work rested and grounded in a good social and family life.
How do you bring ideas to life?
When I get the germ of an idea, I bring my team together and brainstorm about how we can best make that idea a reality…and I encourage my team to do the same.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Social responsibility in business. At K4 Global, we understand the importance of having social responsibility. Businesses tap into their market and aim to provide a product or service that will benefit the audience that they are selling to. In order to keep their consumers happy, though, the business also needs to show social awareness.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Never stop communicating. Listen, talk, and delegate. Communicate with your employees and customers and find out your business’s strengths and weaknesses. If there are areas that can be improved, good communication will help your business to grow.
What advice would you give your younger self?
To not lose hope or focus. I didn’t have a particularly good childhood, but I’ve been able to use those experiences to give me the confidence that I have the grit to see anything through to the end.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I believe that content, not advertising, is the future of marketing, that marketing has evolved completely from the days of pitching a product or service. Today, companies and businesses have to deliver information to the customers and educate them about why your services and products are the best.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Network! It is essential to have friendships with individuals within your industry, your social circle, and beyond. I also recommend that you look at cultivating friendships deliberately with other entrepreneurs and like-minded individuals. You never know when someone within your circle of contacts can help you advance your business.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
It’s always been my practice to be honest and respectful to everyone around me, and I’ve brought that philosophy of kindness and respect to K4 Global. All employees share these values as we only hire passionate people who naturally understand our belief system.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I’ve never been short of ambition. I’m not ashamed to admit that. But, at the beginning of my career, when I was fighting to succeed, I didn’t listen to those around me as much as I should have. Over the years, I’ve done a complete turnaround on that and now I think good communication is a hallmark of our business.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
At K4, we mostly work with other people’s ideas and help them bring them to fruition. It wouldn’t be right for me to share these ideas before they are ready.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I guess, recently, it was the £100 I gave to each one of my three children to donate to Captain Tom’s fundraiser for the NHS during coronavirus. Family is important to me and I try to set aside as much time as possible for my kids.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I confess; I’m a big Alexa fan. I use the device to keep my appointments, social calendar and ideas straight without being weighed down with a non-digital calendar or planner.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Fourth Industrial Revolution” by Dr. Klaus Schwab. It outlines how technology like 3D printing, AI and the Internet of Things are shaping how we do business, today and in the future.
What is your favorite quote?
“In the world of business, the people who are most successful are those who are doing what they love.” – Warren Buffett.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.