Blog: Forward Thinking

Often snarky, sometimes funny, thoughts and musings from Glen Hellman about Executive Development, Leadership, Startups, Washington DC Business and more.

Getting to Why with Beth Berman

This week, I had the pleasure of meeting with Beth Berman, CEO/Founder, Compellications ™. She's a "why," lady. Why do I say that? In leadership, nothing is more important than being conscious of your personal and organizational intentions. Simon Sinek refers to this as your "why," and Daniel Pink calls it "higher purpose." Whatever name you put on it, declaring your "Why" is declaring your intentions. It announces to others whether you are friend or foe. A team of mere mortals aligned by intentions or what Beth Berman, calls their "why" are more likely to succeed than an all-star team of non-aligned superstars. So what's...

#DCTech 1776 Merger or House Cleaning?

Is the Benjamin's Desk, 1776 Merger a merger or is it something else? The deal that has been in the works for 2 months finally closed today. After much consternation, wrangling and negotiated face-saving for the vanquished 1776, Benjamin's Desk kindly allowed Evan Burfield to pretend he's not been pushed out of that which he's burned to the ground. My sources report that Evan's face-saving measures have been a contributing factor in the delay of closing the deal. Is it a merger of equals? Well, it's a merger of equals if you don't take in to account 1776's dire financial straights and...

Intentional Leadership – Leading Through Neuroscience

What is Intentional Leadership? It's understanding how people really make decisions and modeling the behavior that instills confidence in your followers. Intentional Leadership is developing a leadership checklist of values and being true to those values. The Intentional Leadership Video is a 40-minute video of the keynote I gave at the StarWest Leadership Summit, October 2017.  If you can't see the video, you can link to it here. Intentional Leadership - The Neuroscience of Leadership  Outline of the Presentation: Intro - What is the Difference between Management and Leadership and why is that important The Reptilian Brain - Humans Make Rational Decisions Irrational ...

The Rise and Fall of Evan Burfield – Part 1

How The Hell Did We Get Here - The Evan Burfield Story Evan Burfield is arguably one of the smartest people in any room. He's also proof that IQ points don't directly correlate with the ability to build and lead a company to a successful conclusion. 1995 NetDecide In 1995, Burfield was a freshly minted, 19-year-old, high school graduate of one of the countries most prestigious High Schools, Thomas Jefferson in Alexandria Virginia.  Post graduation, he skipped college and founded his first company, NetDecide. According to Burfield, he raised a million dollars in angel funding and eventually $20 million in total funding. To set some...

Startup Grind Business Focus

Mr Cranky Talks – Business Focus

The importance of business focus On September 25th, I discussed business focus during a fireside chat with Chris Haug of Startup Grind. For those of you who don't see the video, you can link to it here....

Startup Funding: Who To Blame for the Lack of #DCTech Cash?

Who should we blame for the lack of startup funding in DC? Angel Investors - Let's blame the Angel Investors! Why aren't people like Mr Cranky investing in startups anymore? After all, wasn't Glen Hellman the #1 Angel Investor in the United States according to Tech Cocktail (tech.co) readers? Actually, no he wasn't and he, who is I, never was the #1 angel anywhere. He who is I, is (or am) also no longer an Angel Investor and the rest of this article describes why. Venture Capitalists - Let's blame the lack of startup funding on all the VC's who just...

1776 Woes – Benjamin’s Trouble With Benjamins

As 1776 faces more financial pressure, more employee attrition, the DC-based "coworking" space's savior Benjamin's Desk, a Philadelphia-based coworking space, is having trouble raising the Benjamins to close the deal. According to sources in Philadelphia, the deal was slated to close early this week but people at Benjamin's Desk are having trouble raising the capital. Word is that Steve Case wants to stop the bleeding cash and would like to see new leadership at 1776, a company presently run by Evan Burfield, DC's undisputed, inarguable, #1 nonprofit executive of...

Evan Burfield Whispering in Sean Spicer's Ear

Evan Burfield… The Sean Spicer of #DCTech

The purchase of 1776 by Benjamin's Desk is heating up. As a result, Evan Burfield will be pushed out to sink or swim as the CEO of spun-out software company selling 1776's Union.  It's getting realer (Trumpian English) and closer. Yesterday, The Washington Business Journal's (WBJ), Andy Medici reported more details of a probable sale. His report kicked off by this Mr Cranky post from 2 days ago and additional sources. Good work, Andy!!! Quoting from the WBJ article, Evan Burfield, 1776 co-founder and CEO, repeatedly denied the news, saying there is no current deal or purchase with Benjamin's Desk. He said 1776 and Benjamin's Desk...