It’s important to be a great listener! In the beginning, I thought I had the answers. I remember holding an employee meeting, and feeling good about answering every question that came up. Later, I realized that I had probably talked too much. Sometimes it’s better to let others talk; to think about the answer; and to wait until the end before talking. I wish I had learned that skill sooner (and better).
I had the pleasure to interview Benjamin Gordon. Benjamin has founded four companies over the course of his career. In 1999, while still in Harvard Business School, Benjamin founded his first business, 3Plex. At 3Plex, Benjamin built one of the first Internet-based transportation management systems (TMS) companies. At Harvard, Benjamin and 3Plex were finalists in the HBS Business Plan Competition. Thereafter, he raised $28 million, built a team of over 200 people, and earned recognition in the New York Times, Business Week, and elsewhere. Benjamin and the 3Plex team sold the company to Maersk in 2002.
In 2002, Benjamin went on to found BG Strategic Advisors (BGSA), an investment banking firm focused on transportation and logistics. BGSA services included M&A, capital raising, and other strategic advisory services. BGSA became the go-to firm for a wide range of companies in the supply chain sector. Clients included NFI, UPS, GENCO, DHL, Agility Logistics, New Breed, Agility Logistics, and others. BGSA was particularly well-known for its work helping entrepreneurs to maximize their value through a sale process. Sell-side clients included Wilpak, Converge, Dixie, Raytrans, OpenMile, and others.
In 2009, Benjamin decided to start another supply chain technology company. He founded EcoSquid, an ecommerce marketplace enabling consumers to remarket or recycle their used mobility devices. Benjamin sponsored a field story at HBS, and again won a finalist award in the HBS Business Plan Competition. Benjamin sold EcoSquid to uSell in 2012.