About The Management Firm

Why we exist

The Management Firm exists to facilitate fast-paced business transformation and breakthrough performance, taking companies from start-up to IPO or life-changing exits for the stakeholders.

We complement the skills and focus of our clients to create results that were not thought possible.

We combine our historical and current involvement in state-of-the-art technologies and business transformation with world-class marketing, organizational and personal development to create a platform for the future. We take you from being A company in the market to THE company in the market.

Scope and expertise

  • Experience + expert systems = insights, actions, results
  • Acquisitions, strategic alliances, $M on/off Wall Street
  • High dollar market growth & leadership
  • Strategic technology focus, broad knowledge + finger-on-the-pulse
  • Start-up ® IPO ® Wall St. ® high-value exits
  • Rapid organizational transformational to state-of-the-art practices
  • Our focus: execution & results, not opinions
  • World-class marketing programs
  • Constantly evolving methodologies

How we work for you

  • We exist for CEO’s who frankly don’t really like the thought of using Management Consultants. 
  • But you do want independent, experienced, creative, passionate, untainted thinkers and rapid action in a rapidly changing world.
  • In, make a big difference very quickly, and out, is our preferred route too.
  • Our integrated, mix & match building blocks bring proven results.
  • You choose only what you need and we do most of the rest.
  • We bring measurable increment and exponential improvement 
  • Our methods also minimize valuable management time. For instance, our 30-day program generally requires less than 3 days of CEO time and 1.5 days of each C-level exec time.

Who we are - and what we love to do

Michael Leigh

Co-founder & turnaround specialist, The Management Firm
Founder & CEO TMF International Inc., a multi-faceted holding company.
Founder & CEO Joli Caméléon – a specialist premium hair & beauty products company.
Public Speaker
– ex: quantifying success and recovering from failure. Writer –  marketing, business, technology, humanity and the connection between them all.

What I do . . . is everything from start-ups to IPO – Tekelec was my first one a lifetime ago,  eventually sold to Oracle for $1B – corporate turnarounds, growth financing, strategic alliances, award winning advertising & marketing (from ad agency Leo Burnett in London, at the beginning of my career), to co-founding Lynx Photonic Networks, a patented optical switch company.  Lynx was selected by the infamous Enron to facilitate their Bandwidth Management Division, which was forecast to rival their Energy business for revenue.

It all went down in flames when Enron, the largest energy management company in the world, declared bankruptcy. My biggest success turned into my biggest failure overnight. My personal loss, $15M. THAT is a lasting life-lesson that makes me a better business analyst and innovator.

I have raised tens of millions of dollars for company growth, and created several companies, including Joli Caméléon, that designs and manufactures human hair wigs for women and children who lose their hair. Still today, I LOVE advising and participating in small and medium size corporate turnarounds.

The act of “retiring” is not on my bucket list and my eternal objective when I do something is to not know whether it should be categorized as business or pleasure.

What I do is not who I am . . . I believe that to be truly happy in life it is imperative that, as human beings, we learn to separate the two. I have seen too many people wed to their Business Card (and the title on it) and when their business world comes crashing down, as it inevitably does from time to time, so do they.  I have lived through 3 boom and bust cycles and built many businesses, collecting numerous successes and just a few notable failures on the way.

Mark Fishburn

Co-founder, The Management Firm: career-long technologist, passionate about all things marketing, dedicated to business and personal transformation.

Founder of strategic marketing company MarketWord in 2006, Instrumental in two successful start-up to IPOs of network equipment companies as MD, Sales, Marketing & technical executive roles. Chaired renowned Industry associations such as the MEF.

What I do . . . is look and listen for what could be possible and the inspiring impact it could have for your company, customers and beyond. Then it’s down to commitment to create something great and world-class execution. Simple really.

These are exciting, breathtaking times. It’s what some are calling the fourth industrial revolution with disruptive technologies, and what’s required to create exponential growth (10x faster, better).  What’s critical is not just tracking technologies (which we do daily) but the use cases that lead to innovative business opportunities.

The way in which P&G, Google, AirBnB, Waze and many others are using exponential organizational techniques are constructing competitive advantages means those not adopting will be likely be left behind. The good news is: taking these on one at a time creates incremental benefits alongside what’s actually working really well.

What makes us so special? Our special sauce is to bring all of these elements together rapidly to impact what you do, the way you do it and the results achieved.

There’s more below on the innovations and industry contributions that have given me such a great life.

I’ve been closely associated with Ethernet and networking for most of my career, installing the first commercial European Ethernet system in Paris in 1982 while at Xerox.

Also while at Xerox I was a product marketing manager of the famous, Ethernet, 8010 Star workstation. An interesting lesson in disruption: when both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates saw it in the Palo Alto Research Center, they thought “hmm that’s interesting” and they went off and created two of the world’s largest companies. Xerox meanwhile kept focused on the number of copiers added each month. A lesson in not exploiting disruptive change that’s extremely valid today. I couldn’t deal with it, quit Xerox and went into the world of computer networks and created my own disruption that lead to my first IPO. On April 23rd 1997, I put the world’s first Gigabit fiber Ethernet product on a Fedex truck and on July 2nd 1999 in a ceremony in England, I handed over the world’s first Copper Gigabit Ethernet product.
During my career I’ve received more than 25 industry awards created my own comprehensive marketing process, helped create and market the $100bn Carrier Ethernet business. Started my own AI-based sales software company 25 years ago that I stubbornly did not sell whan I had the chance. It’s been a lot of fun. Let’s have more!

2019 Open Network User Group (Enterprise IT, software and Networking)
2018-2019 Member Broadband Forum (BBF) 
2015-2018 Strategic Marketing for the BBF (Internet in >1bn locations)
2015 Professional Services Certification, MEF 
2006-2014 Strategic Marketing Support, MEF ($100bn+ Carrier Ethernet mkt)
2009-2011 Co-Chair Global Interconnect, MEF
2007-2009 Board Member CTC-Los Angeles
2003–2006 Chair of the Board, MEF
2002-2003 VP Marketing, MEF
1999-2001 Chair of the Board 10 Gig. Ethernet Alliance
1998-1999 Board Member Gigabit Ethernet Alliance

In other areas, I’m involved in raising awareness of some amazing community projects that are making a difference in Los Angeles and beyond.

Personal development is a key and daily part of my life that brings me great peace of mind and helps me explore new ideas that contribute value each day. When people ask if I’m going on vacation, I always think of the following: 

“A master in the art of living makes little distinction between work and play, between mind and his body. He/she simply pursues their vision of excellence in whatever they do, leaving others to decide whether they are at working or playing.” To me, I’m always doing both, loving life.

Recently I became certified as a consultant for Exponential Organizations’ ExO Works. I’m am an avid consumer of innovative work like Tony Saldanha’s 2019 book”why digital transformations fail”,  Werner Erhard and Martin Heidegger’s 2019 “Speaking Being” and well known publications like Matthew Syed’s “Black Box Thinking” and Salim Ismail’s “Exponential Organizations.”


Mark and Michael met when Mark did an OEM deal for network products with Michael’s company Tekelec in 1985. Both companies did IPOs. Mark and Michael became and remained close friends and collaborators for more than three decades forming the Management Firm in 2019 to make a unique contribution and make a difference.