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Watch > Episode > Mike Baker - Company Rules: Everything I Know About Business I Learned From The CIA

Mike Baker - Company Rules: Everything I Know About Business I Learned From The CIA

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Former Central Intelligence Agency Officer

I have the genuine pleasure on London Real of speaking to some of the most fascinating people in the world. Those who have incredible ideas, philosophies, life experience and at the far end of the scale, those who have lived a life most of us find hard to comprehend. Today’s guest fits into that exact category, a real life James Bond, who spent over fifteen years working in the shadows as a Central Intelligence Agency officer.

I am of course speaking about security expert, TV host and author, Mike Baker. Mike was recruited by the CIA, going on to spend over fifteen years working as a covert field officer specialising in counterterrorism, counternarcotics and counterinsurgency operations.

During this time, Mike was stationed in locations across the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Africa, Europe and the former Soviet Union, where an ability to blend in, understand the customs and master languages all while fulfilling critical objectives that were paramount to national security became his raison d’etre.


Mike mastered the world of espionage, but after some time, domestic life called and Mike was left with a difficult choice: continue working in the field, spending months away from home, or to spend more time with his growing children, by pursuing a life in the private sector.

Mike chose the latter and made what on the surface appears a seamless transition. Mike co-founded Diligence with the goal of building the premier intelligence and risk management firm in the world. Here Mike and his close knit team of experts, advise clients on strategic and competitive intelligence requirements.

The company later became the Portman Square Group after a merge, and with a presence in North & South America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, continues to support the information and security requirements of companies in sectors including oil/gas, mining, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and retail, as well as leading law firms, financial institutions, hedge funds, private equity firms and high net wealth individuals.

Mike’s experience and charisma have made him the go-to guy for a number of prominent news outlets with frequent appearances on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC where his knowledge and understanding of what goes on behind the scenes lends gravitas to his opinion on geopolitical issues.

That same wealth of experience has seen him serve as a consultant and advisor to various government agencies, including the Department of Defence and the Department of Homeland Security. while his popularity with viewers shines through on his own TV show, Black Files Declassified where he digs deep into some of the lesser-known clandestine programs the government are operating.

Mike’s new book – Company Rules: Or Everything I Know About Business I Learned From The CIA, outlines the nine principles he learned at the agency that he believes can help any business to grow and prosper, in much the same way he did, when he took the plunge to leave behind his life at the CIA.

In the book, Mike shares the nine make-or-break tactics that he mastered during his time with the Agency and details how he used them to succeed in the private sector, demonstrating how the business world is in fact, not that much different to the world of espionage and reconnaissance.

For Mike, these exclusive rules, once only accessible to the intelligence community, lay out a step-by-step guide that can help anyone build and grow a business.

“Information gathering, risk mitigating, thinking every scenario through, weighing the options – things rarely work out the way you plan. It’s all about risk versus gain.”

I’m really excited about this conversation – Mike’s a great guy, and very knowledgeable. He knows only too well the background and details of both the Russian and Chinese regimes, the threat they pose to US national security and how our fractious geopolitical situation might unravel in the coming years.

I’m really looking forward to taking a deep dive on these topics and much more, so be sure to spread the word and make sure you tune in as you won’t want to miss this one.

Download clips

A number of clips from this exclusive interview are now available to download, share and repost. Spread the word: grab these clips today!

  1. Will China get to the top of the food chain?
  2. Is the US really a declining nation?
  3. China is the number one perpetrator of economic espionage
  4. Everybody is being tracked in China
  5. Is China’s rise to the top inevitable?
  6. Each generation has been getting softer
  7. Will the West lose interest in the war in Ukraine?
  8. Who blew up the Nord Stream pipelines?
  9. Was the C.I.A. involved with Twitter moderation?
  10. Who shot J.F.K.?
  11. Are U.F.O.s real?
  12. Is A.I. a threat or an opportunity?
  13. Mexico’s battle against drugs and violence
  14. Lessons learned inside the agency
  15. Work just a little bit harder than everyone else

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