Life Changing Conversations for Entrepreneurs

Recognition for a Champion: Dane Miller, co-founder of Biomet

I really enjoyed seeing Inside Indiana Business with Gerry Dick – a great quick video interview with Dane Miller, co-founder of Biomet:

Dane is the real deal. And I’m glad I got to interview Dane in Warsaw for How They Did It: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America – it was the only way to see the titanium scar and hear the story about Indiana’s perfect storm!


Eileen Gittens and Blurb: The Starting Point for How They Did It

I think the starting point for How They Did It: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America is to talk about Eileen Gittens, founder and CEO of Blurb. Blurb is the best example of self-publishing now available online, at The reason is that Eileen is part of the inspiration, how the book came to be.

My friend Jason Apple, formerly of Hoolihan Lokey, invited me to their early stage tech conference in San Francisco. I attended and heard Eileen, one of the presenters that day a couple years ago. Eileen’s talk was a revelation. If you’ve seen Jake and Elwood in The Blue Brothers, this was my moment:

Jake: The band? The band.
Reverend Cleophus James: DO YOU SEE THE LIGHT?
Reverend Cleophus James: DO YOU SEE THE LIGHT?
Elwood: What light?
Reverend Cleophus James: HAVE YOU SEEEEN THE LIGHT?

I realized I could host an event and then publish one copy of a book! So I cornered Eileen and started thinking about publishing the book. I ended up with a big print run and a design from scratch, but Eileen’s inspiration lived on! Thank you Eileen –

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Now on Amazon

How They Did It: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America is a book of thoughts, ideas, and inspiration from 45 of the most successful living company founders ever to come out of the heart of America. The book is now available on Amazon,, 800CEORead, and in select book stores.

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How They Did It is a site for people with big ideas, projects, and companies, who have found themselves, at one point or another, under the gun, facing obstacles or challenged to push themselves way beyond what they thought they could do. Sometimes it helps just hearing from those who have come before and done what seemed impossible.  Share your experiences, learn secrets, and be a part of the ongoing conversation at

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$41 Billion Worth of Inspiration

How They Did It tells how, in their own words, 45 of the most highly successful company founders from the Great Lake states created their combined $41 billion in value, starting literally from zero. You’ll learn the secret sauce for companies like Biomet, Capella, Groupon, TomoTherapy, Feedburner, thinkorswim, and ChaCha.

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