ROI’s Into the Corner Office Podcast: Powerhouse Middle Market CEOs Telling it Real—Unexpected Career Conversations
Summary: The road to the middle market CEO corner office is paved with mile markers that guide in surprising, unpredictable, and some might even say “mysterious” ways! But how do you get such a widely coveted position? This is the question often heard during decades of ROI’s executive search interviews, conducted with top-level executives. ROI’s Into the Corner Office podcast is a new inspiration and answer platform which premieres visionary tales of adventure with great endings and highlights, from powerhouse CEOs driving the formidable success of the U.S. economy’s middle market sector. The CEOs behind this impressive growth reveal insights which equipped them to lead their organizations. Showcasing dynamic leadership stories, Into the Corner Office dives into the heart of what informed and formed these CEOs. Guests share their backgrounds, talk about their early years, and explore what shaped them before they were known for their successes in growing, developing, and leading extraordinary middle market companies and teams. Telling their own stories – straight up and right Into the Corner Office.
Brent Erenwert has been in the produce industry for 20 years, with a strong focus on sales and purchasing. He’s grown through many roles at his family’s produce firm Brothers Produce. Starting in the warehouse as a child, he has risen to the current CEO. Brothers Produce has been in business for over 38 years and one of the most respected produce companies in the US. A serial entrepreneur, Brent has started and co-founded several ancillary organizations including Houston Cold Storage – a full-service cold storage operation, as well as Produce Universe Brands which he sold to Vance Publishing in 2015.
Scott Montgomery has over three decades in the bike and outdoor industries, most recently serving as CEO of Nutcase where he orchestrated a merger with Bravo Sports in 2016. He started his career working alongside his dad to build Cannondale, starting at the young age of eleven and coming on fulltime after completing college. Prior to that Scott was the Founder/GM of Scott Sports and CEO of Club Ride Apparel.
Tom Dickson is from San Francisco. He graduated from BYU in 1971 with a degree in manufacturing engineering. Tom had always had an interest in bread making, and that hobby led him to start a business called Harvest House Food & Grains. One day he spilled some grain and found that when he sucked it up with his vacuum, it acted as a wheat grinder. That was the beginning of the Magic Mill which would later lead him to make blenders and starting Blendtec. The company has continued to grow since then, leading Tom and his team of engineers to come up with many variations of the home blender and turning him into an internet celebrity through the “Will It Blend?” YouTube series.
Helen Fu Thomas is the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Touchjet USA, Inc. An award-winning entrepreneur and marketer, Helen has a track record of building technology and digital media companies from the startup to exit. She was the founding CEO of LeapFrog China. At Livescribe, she grew worldwide sales from 0 to $50 million within three years. She built BlueFocus Communication Group from $0 to $200 million in North America within two years.
Aaron Caddel is the 26-year-old Founder and CEO behind brand darling, Mr. Holmes Bakehouse. What started as a dream while renting out a closet in San Francisco in 2011, has grown into an international vehicle for food culture. His success has never been cheap, though. He moved to San Francisco in his teens, due to driving restrictions placed on him shortly after a brain tumor diagnosis. He credits his success to an internal drive built from avoiding that reality.
Adam Bryant is a respected and noted expert on executive leadership whose work includes 525 Corner Office columns for the New York Times. At Merryck & Co., Adam is a Managing Director and Partner following a distinguished career as an editor and journalist. He works with executive leadership teams and organizations to foster a culture of innovation based on a best-practice framework he developed for his widely praised book Quick and Nimble.
ROI’s Into the Corner Office podcast showcases middle market CEO’s leadership stories and dives into the heart of what helps shape dynamic leaders. Our guests share their backgrounds, talk about their early years, and let us behind the scenes to see what helped shape them before they were known for their success in growing, developing, and leading extraordinary middle market companies and teams. Listen as they tell their own middle market executive leadership stories – straight up and right Into the Corner Office.