Meet Doug Lambert. Managing Director at 2nd Glantz Venture Studio & Advisory
July 13, 2021
MK: Doug, we would like you to share your story with us. Tell us a little bit about your background, experiences and how you got to where you are today.
DL: Sometimes a career is like the movie ‘Yes Man’ featuring Jim Carrey. If you are open to saying yes to opportunities, you ultimately inherit experiences. Some good. Some bad. I often say you learn two things, what you like and what you don’t like, both are valuable.
The gist… After college, I turned down an opportunity as a copywriter to work for my uncle’s marketing firm and after two years, the company was acquired and instead of going with the acquiring firm, I went to Europe for 3 months and learned the joys of severance. When I returned, someone told me “you could place somebody into a job for 25% of their salary” and I said, “I’m in!”. After a few years recruiting, I transitioned to leadership and operations for a growing hospitality company. Basically hearing opportunities and saying yes all along the way. I then started helping two brilliant founders as they launched what eventually became the first Apple App of the Year. They thankfully asked me to help them and the word ‘yes’ appeared again in my vernacular. This trend continued where I helped build companies in mobile safety and even solving a problem in lost and found. Helping to build companies and moving to the board to get out of the way for smarter, enthusiastic and amazing people. My most recent ‘yes’ and current ‘yes’ is proudly building a venture studio and advisory where I can help early to mid sized founders make great decisions early and often.
MK: Your story is awesome! And, yes man (see what I did there?!), we definitely agree that all experiences are valuable and play a role in who we become. Now, life isn’t always smooth sailing. What type of challenges and obstacles did you experience along the way?
DL: Once the boat is in the ocean, sailing becomes the ultimate verb and the words that come before it are basically unknown. Thankfully I’ve prospered and failed several times, both big and small. I have the honor of having an amazing wife, two great healthy kids and caring friends to sail along with me on this personal and professional thing called life. As a leader and empowered to render decisions, the struggles, failures and pitfalls are typically based solely on those decisions, choices and the state of mind of rendering such decisions. The lists include experiences both big and small yet are equally important factors in shaping future decisions, choices if paying attention is a habit. As you de-risk a business, those decisions come early and often and without the appropriate patience and objective guidance, struggles, failures and pitfalls shall most certainly commence. It’s how we learn from them is what is so important. I’ll save some of the examples for our interview :).
MK: Good point there! Reflecting and learning from the results of past decisions can help you make better decisions in the future. And we look forward to going more into it in the interview. Let’s jump into business, tell us about 2nd Glantz.
DL: 2nd Glantz is a strategic partnership company with Glantz Design based in Evanston, IL. The team at Glantz Design is truly talented and embraces several qualities best described when you think of the words passion, genuine, authentic, caring and certainly excellence. At 2nd Glantz, we have an unfair advantage as we have direct and indirect access to really amazing talent to ideate and build ideas into product, customer, cash, repeat business models. In addition, we have our version of an advisory designed to work with early stage companies to exceed the vision of their future self. Our model is simple. Add value. Always. I’ve learned what to do and what not to do over the years and so far, that guidance is something of value to the portfolio companies at 2nd Glantz. We try to provide measurable guidance to de-risk the entire operation, help founders define what they need and then helping them raise working capital, strategic planning and basically connecting the dots. We technically are a start up ourselves and what we are validating is time to value and earning trust by doing, by digging in and providing 24/7 access, by really putting the word operating before advisor and doing the work necessary to appropriately guide and advise early stage companies to make great decisions early and often. Earning our way onto the team and guiding, advising entrepreneurs to build a company of value for all stakeholders. Most importantly, the opportunity to build 2nd Glantz is something that brings me great joy.
MK: And how would you define success?
DL: Success is adding value to someone and expecting nothing in return. Criteria is based on mindset and putting yourself in a position to provide maximum value no matter what you do. I try to add value to others every day in some way, shape or form. Making a positive impact on another individual is truly the most important and rewarding experience anyone can attempt to comprehend. At 2nd Glantz, we have an opportunity to help one entrepreneur at a time during their entire entrepreneurial experience which includes the ideation, validation, build, scale and exit phase of their journey.
MK: Doug, you have achieved great things and we are glad you shared some of it with our readers. Where do you get inspiration from? Do you have any recommendations?
DL: Yes! The list is long and infinitely evolving. The quick list is certainly Brad Feld and all of his books. In addition, Troy Henikoff videos are a must watch and his recent book Levers is a must read. Certainly Stephen Covey, Patrick Lencioni, Nir Eyal, John Bevere, Oren Klaff, Jim Collins and John Maxwell are authors to embrace. Each of these and many other authors and subject matter experts have directly or indirectly positively impacted my journey. You certainly have to understand before you are understood. If that philosophy is embraced and one reads and absorbs information to help them make better decisions to add value to others, the journey becomes more exciting.
Today’s Featured Guest:
2nd Glantz Venture Studio & Advisory