Dr. Barbara Weaver Smith, founder and president of The Whale Hunters©, has an exceptional leadership background that began in higher education and successfully transitioned to entrepreneurship. With partner Larry Smith, she built the consulting firm Smith Weaver Smith, Inc., now celebrating more than a decade of significant achievement in the education and economic sectors. Career highlights include serving as a dean at Ball State University, president of the Indiana Humanities Council, and founder of two thriving companies. She is known for inspiring, initiating, and managing accelerated change through an uncanny ability to understand “how things work“in diverse organizations.
Dr. Smith has led more than 50 complex collaborations involving business, government, higher education, and not-for-profits. These partnerships created new ventures in economic development, education, and regional planning that resulted in millions of dollars in private and public investment. Through that work, Dr. Smith perfected a transformational, collaborative sales process that dramatically accelerates an organization’s growth trajectory: The Whale Hunters Process™.
In 2004, Dr. Smith founded The Whale Hunters to bring this proven change-management process to small, mid-sized, and large companies. Her Whale Hunting specialties include implementing the process, coaching the village, training RFP teams to win their hunts, and deal coaching for an RFP hunt. Dr. Smith guides entrepreneurs, CEOs, and sales leaders with education, peer coaching, and team training on this winning process that has helped transform more than 300 companies and counting.
Dr. Smith’s honors included being named by the late Governor Frank O’Bannon as Sagamore of the Wabash, the state of Indiana’s highest civilian honor, for service to the state of Indiana. As a renowned author of Whale Hunting: How to Land Big Sales and Transform Your Company (Wiley: 2008), Winning Whales with an RFP, and Whale Hunting Women, Dr. Smith is also an influential business leader and respected keynote speaker at events throughout the country.