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Dave’s blog

Between Courage and Ego

I’m deeply thinking about a complex personal dilemma, the details of which are not important here.  I decided to turn for ideas to Ryan Holiday’s newest book, Courage is Calling.  If you ever wanted to be brave about something and need to be pumped up to act, this book is for you.  I want to be brave BUT asked myself, “Is my desire to be brave being driven by my EGO?”  I decided to revisit the ideas in an earlier book of Holiday’s called Ego is the Enemy.

I encourage reading both books – then perhaps what I’m about to say will make more sense.,..

If ego is my enemy, then can the brave thing my ego is calling me to do be courageous, or even smart?  If courage is a virtue, is courage still a virtue when called on by ego?

So confusing, until…

Holiday’s books seemed in conflict until I concluded this: if courageous behavior is stimulated by ego, then it’s not courage – it’s something else – somewhere on a continuum between vanity and foolhardiness.  I’ve decided that true courage is not ego centric – it’s bravery centered in rational thought and humility.

The Greatest Shift in Power I’ve Ever Seen is Right Now

We’re all seeing it: the tectonic shift in power from employer over employee, to employee over employer.

Workers from laborers to craftsmen to salespeople and software coders are increasingly in control, forcing wages up (I think way more than the federal government is stating) and forcing employers to change how they recruit and retain employees.  Simon Sinek’s, The Infinite Game (see What Dave’s Listening To) talks about the critical interconnectedness between an “infinite mindset” and employee engagement.

Recently the CEO of a small Colorado contractor with 30 employees told me, “I’ve adapted in the last couple of years – now I work for my employees.”  He was OK with that, feeling that he’s become a better leader.  In fact, 95% of the Colorado CEOs I’ve spoken with tell me that they’ve become more employee focused.  This is an amazing time for employees – and a time for employers to authentically lean into culture and creating meaningful work.


Trust Drives Colorado’s Entrepreneurial Progress

I got to thinking about TRUST following my interview with co-founders Jenn Knight and Niji Sabharwal of AgentSync.  Jenn said that because they are spouses, they have an existing level of deep trust, which allows each to more readily accept the other’s judgement, facilitates candid dialogue, and ultimately allows the company to move more quickly.  This is consistent with the theme of the book titled, The Speed of Trust.

Time and again I hear from entrepreneurs and founders that the spirit of collaboration has helped them succeed in Colorado.  Colin McIntosh of Sheets & Giggles (episode), talked about how Chris White,  founder of Shinesty, helped him to initially establish Sheets & Giggles’ shipping from the Shinesty facilities.  That kind of collaboration can’t happen without trust – Colin trusting that Chris wouldn’t try to somehow take Colin’s products or customers, and Chris that teaching Colin the shipping ropes and helping him get started would somehow, oh, I don’t know, build Karma in exchange for their effort.  It seems to me that TRUST is a core value in Colorado’s entrepreneurial community, and it’s one that is universally rewarding.

Colorado Tech is a Widening Web

I love the excitement about Denver and Boulder attracting tech company HQ2s, tech investment, tech jobs.  In my interview with Mario Ciabarra, we talked about the ability of Quantum Metric, based in Colorado Springs, to find the tech talent needed.  His response, “talent is everywhere!”  Some of their employees are in the Springs, others in remote offices, some completely remote.  Being based in Colorado Springs has worked – Quantum Metric just raised its last round valued at $1 Billion. 

Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA downtown city skyline at dusk.

Cherwell Software also started in Colorado Springs – you can hear my interview with Sam Gilliland, founder on PROCO360.  John Street, founder and CEO of Pax8 (interview on PROCO360) is from Colorado Springs and started his first company there.  Proximity is based in Montrose (interview with CEO Josh Freed).  I’m rooting for more tech growth in the Springs, and across all of Colorado!   If you know someone perfect for PROCO360 who helps that cause, please let me know! 

Summer’s Half Over!

It seems that every year about this time we hear, “Summer’s going so fast!”  Yes, it is – again this year.  

Let’s remember why we live here in Colorado!  Choose an outing you really want and do it!  This photo is south of Hoosier Pass at the waterfall feeding Montgomery Reservoir.  Although we hiked about a mile to this lovely spot, you can just about drive to it.  Better views are hikes from the top of Hoosier Pass heading west from the parking lot. 

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