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How You Can Create Success

Insights From

Keith Tomatore
Keith Tomatore

KT is the Chief Executive Officer at iFrog Marketing Solutions where he has led their transformation from a small digital marketing company to a pioneer in global marketing technology. As CEO, he has reshaped the focus from regional to national in both brand and retail across many different verticals. KT’s continued innovation propelled iFrog to the forefront of the marketing tech landscape. When he isn’t building exponential growth in the marketing technology industry, KT spends his time traveling, working out, and harboring a love for Boston sports teams.

As the year winds down, I find myself reflecting more. Today’s blog is important for me because I’m writing it on my 15-month anniversary as iFrog’s CEO. This day is special to me because it reminds me of the big decision I made when I left a job and company I loved to run a business.

Something I always say is success or failure is usually judged by the marketplace and achievements are group achievements we pursue as a team during our time together. All of this has left me thinking about success and how it eludes some folks while others repeatedly gain success and often from no distinct advantages. How does this happen?

Why do some people succeed while others that are similar fail? I realize there is a thin line between success and failure — but what is that line and where does it exist? At times, we see some folks being successful while those with the same skills and advantages are not as successful. I am not certain of all of the elements that create success or failure, but one thing I am certain of is the concept of discipline creating momentum. 

From a young age, I learned people largely control their own destiny. There are some that don’t embrace this fact. They wait for others to take charge of their lives and — to me — this makes little sense. For me, I have always tried to create discipline and structure for myself. I never thought it was my manager who would make me successful. My success or failure was always on me and that’s exactly the way I wanted it. 

Each day, I get up at 4:30 a.m. and go to the gym (or, home gym in 2020). In my mind, I get to accomplish something before I start my work. Daily accomplishments give me momentum and these small acts often serve as the catalyst for much larger victories. I refer to this as ‘personal empowerment’. Personal empowerment to me means taking control of your life. People who are not empowered tend to lack control over what they accomplish. They allow others to make decisions for them — be it their spouse, partner, children, managers, or colleagues. They often lack confidence in themselves and their decisions, and therefore rely on others. 

Ultimately the measure of any person’s success is determined by themselves: how much they want to make an impact and what they want to achieve. Giving up control of your life to a manager makes no sense! Everyone has a job that needs to be completed and done very well. However, people need to take control of their own lives. Only then can we add more value to our teammates and organizations. By taking ownership of your life — both the good and the bad — you set up the foundation for success. 

I would say that taking ownership of all aspects of your life is the secret to success. Many people spend their time deflecting their mistakes, complaining over their circumstances, and giving excuses for their lack of results. Many people don’t realize that accepting responsibility for their actions, being totally accountable for their results, and taking ownership of their lives including any mistakes they made is one of the biggest secrets to success. 

When you combine hard work and ownership, you have a winning formula for success. When you invest and focus on yourself, you will find success. Don’t fall into the entitlement trap — this leads to a victim mentality. Achievement feels better after hard work and discipline. It is on us to create success for ourselves. We have to figure out our personal definition of success and then pursue it. We can’t ever control what happens to us, but we can control how we respond to it. 

At iFrog Marketing Solutions, we take great pains to make certain we hire Pirates embracing personal empowerment. If someone doesn’t prioritize personal accountability, they may not be a good fit for our organization. Each of our Pirates embrace accountability and being in service to our clients. For us, it is about hiring great people embracing ownership and service and combining that with best-in-class technology. That is how our clients get an unfair advantage in their business. 

How do you define success? How do you define personal empowerment? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please drop me a line at or send me a tweet @iFrogCEO

Be a Pirate, have a great day, and embrace success! 

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