What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

todd_mike_partee

 

All great relationships have a story.

I first met Todd Humphrey on the phone.  His was the name that just kept popping up, the name that wouldn’t go away.  I did the phoner and it was an upside surprise, so I suggested we meet at some point in the (distant) future.  The following Monday I walked into my office and I did a double take.  Eva warned me seconds in advance, that “Todd is your first meeting of the day.”  What the…?

We hit it off and Todd joined my exec team at Kobo by week’s end, running business development, and was in Las Vegas with me the week after for some deal making.

That was four years ago.

In that time, he’s visited 20 countries on 6 continents, nearly a million miles for Kobo and was key to our success.  He got deals on the table.  He got deals done.   He got on the cover of dozens of national newspapers you will never read.  Once he had the MD of a prospective partner in headlock (not entirely unexpected if you recognize the former semipro hockey player once had 350 penalty minutes in a season.)  Then there was that time when he ordered a round of tequila shots for the President of a large telco and his team to kick things off.  Or the time we were on a road show, and Todd made sure he lowered the seats the VC’s would sit in, before they entered the room, so we towered over them (a hilarious move btw).

“What could possibly go wrong?” was a line that became part of our culture.  If you want to win, you have to be prepared to take risks and Todd is not shy.

I could go on and on with amazing, and some unbelievable stories (Woody Harrelson snowball fight…Wonder Woman on a bus…) but I’ll save those for the book.  As a leader, more than anything Todd has heart.  He understands culture and the importance of the moment – capturing it, working it, shaping it, using it to build and grow a company.   Time and time again, Todd gave everything he had to his team, to win.  And he always had their back.   That kind of leadership is rare.

For all these reasons and more, I am thrilled that Todd has joined as co-founder at the Everlong Project where we plan on building another great company.   As we are just rounding out Month 2, doubling our space, growing the team, and working toward launch – it’s great timing.

30 years ago this past week, Gretzky won his first Stanley Cup.  As a little boy, I was forever changed by witnessing a young team knock off the reigning Stanley Cup champs.  That team had Wayne, age 24, but they never would’ve won without Messier.   Messier had skills, he had grit, but more importantly he had heart.

Therein lies a lesson.

Welcome Todd!

– MS, from Monaco

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