About Joe

Joe Mechlinski is an award-winning business leader and a New York Times bestselling author.

But this is far from where he started.

Joe grew up in Baltimore’s inner city, with food insecurity and intermittent, unstable housing. He attended the worst high school in Maryland, with no air conditioning and lead in its water. Out of 900 freshmen in his class, he was one of only 200 seniors to graduate.  

Miraculously, he went from the worst high school in Maryland to one of the most prestigious universities in the country, The Johns Hopkins University. This changed the trajectory of his life, and eventually business. After attending 23 funerals by the time he was 23, he had to make a shift, or he wouldn’t make it. 

Today, Joe is the founder and CEO of SHIFT, a tech-enabled management consulting firm that has been nationally recognized as a 9x ‘Best Workplace.’

Joe is on a mission to change the way we work to transform the way we live. He helps leaders and organizations unblock, unlock and unleash the potential and momentum of their people.

Recently, Joe launched an employee engagement platform called Latch, which uses storytelling to authentically connect, engage, and drive performance in all work environments.

Beyond this, Joe has devoted his life to being of service, especially to his hometown of Baltimore. He is dedicated to helping underserved, at-risk communities, donating and investing more than $1MM to cause and impact partners. He is also a venture partner with Conscious Venture Partners, a group that invests in minority and female-founded businesses.

Captivating clients and audiences on national stages, Joe’s passion is palpable - challenging the way we think, operate, and engage in ourselves, our relationships, our life and our work. 

Joe‘s 2013 book, Grow Regardless, became a New York Times bestseller, followed by his second book, Shift The Work, which motivates readers to attain meaningful work-life integration by defining one’s passions. His next release, Who Says, slated for publication in 2023, seeks to expose and challenge the hidden assumptions and authorities we encounter but may not recognize in our professional and personal lives.

Joe’s approach to business and life is rooted in the soil of adversity. Growing up with food insecurity in intermittent, unstable housing, Joe ended up playing football for Patterson High School in Baltimore, Maryland – a move that ultimately earned him a place at the prestigious Johns Hopkins University.

There, Joe discovered the power of finding one’s purpose, and he has dedicated his days to helping others find theirs ever since.


Grew up in East Baltimore, went to Patterson High School, won Scholar Athlete Grand Prize from the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame


Launched first business at 19, growing it to 150 employees in 3 years while attending The Johns Hopkins University


Co-founded entreQuest at 23 with the mission to help leaders grow regardless


Co-founded the b4students Foundation to help improve the high school graduation rate in Baltimore City (100% of b4students high schoolers graduated vs 55% average graduation rate)


Acquired a recruiting firm to bolt on to our management consulting services


Hit the wall and lost $1MM during the Great Recession


Released first book, Grow Regardless, and became a New York Times, USA Today, Amazon and Barnes and Noble bestseller


Launched SHIFT Society as the world’s most innovative, mission-driven, invite-only membership community of entrepreneurs and executives


Invested and became a General Partner in the Conscious Venture Lab


Rebranded entreQuest to SHIFT with an evolved mission to bring more heart and humanity to the future of work; Released the next bestselling book, Shift the Work


Curated the Complicated Conversations conference, with Richard Saul Wurman, founder of TED, Steven Kotler, New York Times bestselling author and Flow expert, and Chris Wilson, social justice advocate, artist and bestselling author


Launched a FREE Remote Survey for 20K employees, capturing what was happening as the workforce braced itself during a global pandemic


Acquired a tech platform to meet the needs of the new world of work


Delivered #1 watched TEDx Talk worldwide on The Future of Work


The third book, Who Says, is set to release

Worked with





leaders on management techniques



Best Places to Work: 5X Baltimore Business Journal & 4X Inc. Magazine

Invested in


socially conscious startups, donating and investing more than $1M back to Baltimore City

Contact Joe