PROCO360 - “Pro-Business Colorado” podcast
Growing into CEO, then Hired as CEO - Cherwell’s Sam Gilliland

Growing into CEO, then Hired as CEO - Cherwell’s Sam Gilliland

May 23, 2019

Sam Gilliland on how he brought the “Traveling Gnome” to Travelocity, and on becoming CEO of Cherwell.

 “If you add value with a human touch, great, let’s keep that human touch. If you’re not adding value there, let’s automate it.”

Sam Gilliland, CEO, Cherwell

Cherwell, with 500 employees and based in Colorado Springs, provides IT Services Management to clients around the world.  I wanted to interview its new CEO, Sam Gilliland, to learn about “the man who brought us the Gnome” (Travelocity), and the difference between growing into a substantial CEO role, and stepping into the role of CEO another business, which he recently has done.  You’ll enjoy our conversation about balancing “human touch” vs. automated service. 

Can you learn CULTURE from an electrical contractor?

Can you learn CULTURE from an electrical contractor?

May 5, 2019

How relentless focus on a CULTURE of SAFETY grew Encore Electric from startup to 900 team members. 

 “Our people know: If you don’t feel safe, then say so.  Stop the work and ask the right questions… the idea is stop and think.”

Willis Wiedel, President, Encore Electric

I became aware that Encore Electric was recognized as the TOP company nationally for safety.  That’s a big deal, and not a reason I’d want to interview its CEO. 

I asked for an interview because I was (and remain) impressed at how a relentless focus on culture, in this case a culture of safety, achieved great organizational results.  Regardless of your business or industry, you’ll find this interview interesting and instructive. 

 

Blockchain “Decrypted” (REALLY!) Part 2 (wrap-up), BXE Capital

Blockchain “Decrypted” (REALLY!) Part 2 (wrap-up), BXE Capital

April 25, 2019

Following this interview, I finally think I’m beginning to understand the relevance and importance of BLOCKCHAIN technology.  Even though I DID the interview, I listened to it again.  I hope you enjoy the conclusion of this interview!  

Dave Tabor, Host, PROCO360

Blockchain “decrypted” (really!) Part 1, BXE Capital

Blockchain “decrypted” (really!) Part 1, BXE Capital

April 17, 2019

“Right now, the US government spends a couple billion dollars a year printing money, and then billions more fighting counterfeiting… with blockchain technology, it becomes digitized!”

Josh Finkleman, BXE Capital

Before this interview I’d watched 3 videos, read articles and listened to clips and still couldn’t understand why experts are so passionately convinced that Blockchain Technology will change the world.  If I seem a bit “driven” during this interview, it’s because I was.  I was determined to come out of it with a better comprehension of this topic – and I DID.  I hope you do too.  The interview was so interesting that I just kept going, breaking into two episodes.  

 

 

Bonus AfterTrack: Behind the Scenes in the Reality TV Business

Bonus AfterTrack: Behind the Scenes in the Reality TV Business

April 12, 2019

Hear the lively and fascinating conversation that followed the "official" interview with Jim Berger, co-founder and Chairman of High Noon Entertainment. 

Behind the Scenes in the Reality TV Business

Behind the Scenes in the Reality TV Business

April 4, 2019

“Stay focused on creating new business.  Don’t be the person that sits in the office working on the business you already have – look out… lights out!”

Jim Berger, Chairman and Co-Founder, High Noon Entertainment

I’m fascinated by how well-produced reality TV can draw viewers in, particularly for a topic in which I have no inherent interest!  In my conversation with Jim Berger, we talk about how that happens.  Does he create a concept and then find talent, or does he find a talent and then create a show?  How many times did he have to pitch a show with Chip and Joanna Gaines called Fixer Upper and did he know it would be a massive hit?  What is the secret sauce that makes hit reality shows succeed when most fail?  I was so curious, and Jim answered my questions.

Colorado author of Brave New Work on HOW to do better

Colorado author of Brave New Work on HOW to do better

March 20, 2019

“The main roadblocks are about ego and identity. You have leaders who are asking… What makes me important?  What makes me special?  How do I contribute to the meaning and the purpose?”

Aaron Dignan, Author, Brave New Work and Founder of The Ready

I’ve been watching for a Colorado author to feature on PROCO360 – and wow, I found a great one!  Aaron Dignan’s book, Brave New Work, was called “The Management Book of the Year” by Seth Godin and praised by many including Arianna Huffington, Adam Grant – author of Originals (and more), and Kevin Kelly, co-Founder of Wired.  Entering our interview, I had some serious curiosity about Arron’s book and we discussed them:  1) What's different about what he advocates from what's been urged for workplace change in the recent past? 2) Why is this approach more urgent NOW than say, 20 or even 10 years ago? and 3) HOW to make changes that stick.  Listen in!

Ping Identity: Run toward fear, to the point of no return

Ping Identity: Run toward fear, to the point of no return

March 6, 2019

 “I don’t have to know all the details of how we’re gonna survive to know that it is directionally correct, and I’ll boldly step beyond the point of no return and let the details sort themselves.”

Andre Durand, CEO, Ping Identity

I was looking forward to my interview with Andre Durand because I knew we’d be talking more about leadership and decision making than the technology behind Ping Identity... but let’s not overlook that Ping Identity technology is used by HALF of the Fortune 100, including ALL the top banks.  Andre has led Ping Identity from startup to its acquisition for over $600 million, and still leads the company today.  We also discussed Colorado’s unique position and niche as a hub for technology.  Listen in!

Proximity – no need to sell when you have what they want

Proximity – no need to sell when you have what they want

February 21, 2019

 “We don’t actually have a sales team, we have a relationship team… those who decide to use us, they will ask us to be customers.”

Josh Freed, CEO and co-Owner, Proximity

When I got a call from Leah Carlson at Proximity suggesting that I might want to interview Josh Freed, I didn’t know anything about Proximity, and I was skeptical.  She talked with me and as we talked, I was really intrigued about this little Montrose, Colorado based startup.  Then I researched and got excited – but not as excited as I got DURING the interview when the light bulb flashed “ON!”  This little company won’t be little for long – Proximity has created a software and hardware package that enables anyone to open and run a co-working space – anywhere.  And the coolest part is that customers don’t need to be sold.  Check out this interview.

From Dishwasher to the Sage of Hospitality

From Dishwasher to the Sage of Hospitality

February 7, 2019

 “I love to go to businesses that aren’t ours… that are new… I want to walk through new hotels, new restaurants… that’s exciting for me.”  

-Walter Isenberg, CEO of Sage Hospitality 

Sage owns and operates over 50 hotels, plus many notable restaurants. Walter Isenberg is well known and well respected in the industry – and in Colorado business and philanthropic communities. What a great conversation – Walter really did start as a dishwasher. The industry has evolved and so has Walter’s vision for what makes a great hotel experience. If you are fascinated by the huge investments in art displayed in Sage hotels like The Crawford, The Maven, and The Curtis, and curious about what drives the decisions to create these amazing hotel experiences, you’ll enjoy this interview.