Today the much-hyped Brian Forth was our guest speaker. Professor Fry had mentioned a few times before his visit that he was one of the perennial visitors for this class and that we would be hearing from him soon. Soon came rather un-expectedly however since it was a surprise visit earlier than expected.
Brian’s presentation felt to me like a oft-repeated tale of a labor of love. Brian relayed to us how he “accidentally” founded Sitecrafting to fill a gap in the technology field that he felt would be present in the near future. At the time websites were still a novel concept and he correctly perceived that the internet would be an incredible opportunity for those who could get in early. Having been in the entrepreneurship field for 20+ years Brian had plenty of insights to give to our class. As opposed to previous presenters in our class Mr. Forth ended up giving a more off-the cuff presentation which allowed for us as a class to direct the flow through questioning. One of the things that he mentioned that resonated with me was his advice that you can never assume that people know how to do the right thing and that there will be people who wish to “be special” in any company. To the first point he was trying to convey that all actions in a company should and will be modeled from the behavior of the CEO and if one does not set the behavior they wish to see it will not manifest itself naturally. The second point is that those who wish to “be special” inside a company are a burden to the growth of the company. If a person is using a place of employment solely as a springboard to advance themselves, especially in a start-up environment then they are actually hindering the growth of the company due to wasted effort and counter productivity that could have devoted to the company.