Eo Spotlight: Mark Lewis

Jeff Strout

CEO, Communiqué LLC.  •  Coaching and Consulting •  EO Member Since 2013


In order to be successful, Mark Lewis believes there’s one simple key that can revolutionize personal lives, societies and businesses alike: just give a damn.

“Entrepreneurs step out of the box all the time, but sometimes we have the tendency to lose the human perspective that determines success,” Lewis said. “Our success is driven by our unique contributions, those things we do that set us apart from others.”

Lewis explores this idea in his book, appropriately titled Give a Damn!, which breaks down nine areas that contribute to ego-fueled actions, the effects these actions have on the world, and how moving away from a “what’s in it for me” attitude can turn things around. It’s a discussion that Lewis has always been passionate about, and he uses the hard-earned wisdom he’s garnered throughout his career to rise as an authority on the subject.

His upward climb began in 1994, when he started one of the first Internet Service Providers in the New Orleans area, Communiqué. Until then, he’d immersed himself in the business world through smaller ventures that took him through niche industries like the vending machine business, but he had not found the success he knew he was capable of achieving.

“These small experiences helped me when I finally took the plunge to becoming a full entrepreneur. But to be honest with you, I was lucky,” Lewis said. “I was out of a job and had nowhere to turn. I had nothing to do, so I helped write a business plan, financed the equipment on a credit card, and teamed up with two others to form Communiqué.”

Communiqué was a success, and the service amassed more than 10,000 users before it was purchased in 1997. From there, Lewis became nothing short of a trailblazer. He served as President of the Louisiana Technology Council to assist with the technology development of Louisiana, and in 2005 was selected by the Governor’s office as Technology Leader of the Year for the State of Louisiana. When he became the majority owner of consulting company Simmons & White, Lewis thought it appropriate to bring back the name that started his journey and rebranded the company as Communiqué.

Now, as a published author, Lewis is focused on teaching others the lessons he’s learned along the way, as well as learning new ones himself. To achieve this, he turns to EO, whose core values are the same by which Lewis lives his own life.

“I attend EO events, especially the learning events, to continue to grow as an individual,” Lewis said. “I ask myself, ‘What can I do to be the best person I can in helping others be successful and happy?’  Everything revolves around that.”

Of particular value to Lewis are EO’s forums, which invigorate him in two ways: not only does he get to share his own experiences, but he is also able to hear about the experiences of others and to learn from the obstacles they have faced. Lewis said this helps to provide him with motivation and direction at times when he has felt stuck.

“Forum has made me a better individual. It has allowed me to help others based on my past experiences, but most importantly, it has helped me solve challenges both personally and professionally,” Lewis said. “Sometimes we don't look at things deep enough, and it brings up issues on who you are as a person that are eye opening.”

As a result, Lewis gives a damn more than ever, and as he continues to learn, he hopes that his journey can serve as a testament to the power of trust and respect, as well as an “attitude of gratitude” towards others.

“By taking responsibility, being accountable and showing appreciation to others, everything else will follow in a positive way,” Lewis said. “No one can do it by themselves, and there will be challenges along the way, but success is doing the doing the right thing for the right reasons. It’s the EO way."