Forge Ahead Podcast
About the Podcast
In this podcast, Ben Wright, CEO and Founder of Velocity Global, speaks to forward-thinking business and tech leaders who are shaping the world of work at their companies while navigating new challenges like remote work, upskilling, recruitment and retaining top talent, and managing a global workforce.
Submit a question or recommend a guest by emailing us at [email protected].
Episode 24: The Power of Democratizing Data with Peter Wang, CEO of Anaconda
Peter Wang is the CEO of Anaconda, the world’s leading data science platform with over 20 million users. The innovative free and open-source platform pioneered Python for data science and has become the bedrock for machine learning. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Peter discusses the importance of democratizing data, opening access to tools, and enabling collaboration.
Episode 23: The Methodology of Billion-Dollar Remote Teams, with Liam Martin, Co-Founder of Time Doctor
Liam Martin is the Co-Founder of Time Doctor (formerly Staff.com), a productivity software that helps managers track their team’s performance. Liam is also the author of the upcoming book “Running Remote,” which is about the methodology of successful remote teams. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Liam discusses operating asynchronously, freeing up employees to do the deep work, and speaking your client’s language.
Episode 22: Fostering a Healthy Company Culture with David Garcia, CEO of ScoutLogic
David Garcia is CEO and Co-Founder of ScoutLogic, a high-growth, pre-employment background check company. He has over 25 years of experience in B2B sales, marketing, and general management. Earlier in his career, David worked for one of the leading background check companies and saw how the industry could benefit from a more personalized approach. He founded ScoutLogic in 2017, and it became the first background check firm to leverage big data and analytics. In this episode of Forge Ahead, David talks about the power of self-reflection, learning from your anti-mentors, and fostering a healthy company culture.
Episode 21: Inclusivity and Representation in Women’s Athletics with Mollie Marcoux-Samaaan, LPGA Tour Commissioner
Mollie Marcoux-Samaan is the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association) Tour Commissioner. She graduated from Princeton University, where she played soccer and ice hockey as a student-athlete. Throughout her career, Mollie has held various administrative and senior management roles, including Executive Vice President at Chelsea Piers Connecticut and Director of Athletics at Princeton. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Mollie discusses inviting people from diverse backgrounds, advocating for gender equality, and improving the accessibility of athletics.
Episode 20: Discovering Your Deeper ‘Why’ with Chris Hauth, Ultra-Endurance Coach at AIMP Coaching
Chris Hauth is a former Olympic swimmer and founder of AIMP (Advancing the Integration of Mindset and Performance) Coaching. He works with ultra-endurance athletes worldwide to prepare them both physically and mentally for the challenges of long-distance swimming, biking, and running. Chris also uses his expertise in mindset coaching to train military personnel and corporate executives. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Chris talks about finding your deeper ‘why,’ getting a role model, and leaning into difficult moments.
Episode 19: Turning Difficult Circumstances into Meaningful Purpose with Ryan O’Donoghue, CEO of First Descents, and Jon Strum, Host of RealTalk MS
Ryan O’Donoghue is CEO of First Descents, a nonprofit that provides life-changing outdoor adventures for young adults impacted by cancer, multiple sclerosis (MS), and other serious diseases. Jon Strum is the host of RealTalk MS, a weekly podcast covering news and information related to MS. Both Jon and Ryan were inspired to pursue their respective careers after losing loved ones to critical illnesses. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Ryan and Ben discuss turning a challenge into purpose, meeting people where they are, and reaching out for support.
Episode 18: Creating the Next Groundbreaking Company with Geoffrey von Maltzahn, Biological Engineer and Serial Entrepreneur
Geoffrey is a visionary biological engineer, serial entrepreneur, and inventor with a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering and medical physics from MIT. He has founded several life sciences companies, representing over $10 billion in public and private market capitalization. Geoffrey also holds more than 200 patents or patent applications, including therapeutics for cancer treatment. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Geoffrey talks about making your own rules, taking time to find the right talent, and aspiring for greatness.
Episode 17: Finding Greater Connection in the World Through Digital Nomadism with Tarek Kholoussy, Founder of Nomads Skillshare!
Tarek is truly a citizen of the world. He’s traveled to over 100 countries and supported social causes all over the globe through his organization, Nomads Giving Back! He is also the Founder and CEO of Nomads Skillshare!, an online education resource that helps remote workers strengthen professional skills via virtual classes and workshops. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Tarek discusses the importance of following your unique career path, getting out of your comfort zone, and making human connections.
Episode 16: How to Transcend Barriers to Success with Kevin Hall, Four-Time APGA TOUR Champion
Kevin lost his hearing at age 2 after becoming ill with H-flu meningitis. At 9, he started playing golf and later became the first Black golfer to play at Ohio State University (OSU). Kevin won the Big Ten in 2004 and is also a four-time Advocates Professional Golf Association (APGA) TOUR champion. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Kevin’s mom, Jackie Hall, interprets as Kevin discusses the importance of consistent practice, facing challenges with a positive outlook, and working diligently toward your end goal.
Episode 15: How to Earn a Multi-Billion Dollar Valuation, with Fivetran COO Taylor Brown
Taylor Brown, COO at Fivetran, started the company nine years ago with his childhood friend, George Fraser. Today, the SaaS data integration service is valued at $5.6 billion and backed by Andreessen Horowitz, a venture capital firm that’s invested in successful tech enterprises such as Airbnb, Facebook, and Lyft. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Taylor talks about persevering in the face of challenges, dealing with growing pains in your company, and solving operational inefficiencies.
Episode 14: Cultivating Career-Defining Partnerships with Don Strasburg and Sam Warren, the Creators of Icelantic’s Winter on the Rocks
Don Strasburg, co-President of AEG Presents Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Northwest, teamed up with Sam Warren, Partnership Director at Icelantic Skis, to put on the only winter concert at the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Don and Sam talk about cultivating lasting business partnerships, building products that reflect your values, and why shared, in-person experiences are more important than ever.
Episode 13: Building a Smarter, More Connected Future with Amr Salem, CEO and Board Member at Quantela
Amr Salem, CEO and Board Member at Quantela, has more than 30 years of experience in the tech industry. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Amr talks about the value of playing to your strengths, adapting successful ideas to your business, and putting your customer at the center of everything you do.
Episode 12: How Showing Up as an Authentic Leader Benefits Your Company, from Armis CRO Brian Gumbel
Brian Gumbel, Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) at Armis, brings 20 years of sales experience to an industry-leading cybersecurity company. In 2010, he came out as gay—a decision that had a profound impact on his personal and professional life. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Brian opens up about his journey coming out and why it’s critical to show up authentically as a leader.
Episode 11: How to Thrive in the Age of the Global Untethered Workforce with Robert Herjavec, Founder and CEO of Herjavec Group
Robert Herjavec, Founder and CEO of Herjavec Group as well as an investor on the TV show Shark Tank, helps secure enterprise companies amid evolving cyber threats. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Robert discusses the nuances of supporting a global workforce, establishing a presence in your target markets, and adjusting to a new remote work-life balance.
Episode 10: Minimizing Churn and Other Business Secrets from Streetbees CEO and Founder Tugce Bulut
Tugce Bulut, Founder and CEO of Streetbees, helps companies understand customer behaviors in markets where data is scarce. In this episode of Forge Ahead, Tugce reveals how Streetbees maintains zero churn, increases user engagement through UX, and grows quickly by leveraging pre-existing resources.
Episode 09: A New Perspective on Finding World-Class Talent with Mickey Boodaei, Co-Founder and CEO of Transmit Security
Mickey Boodaei is a serial investor, entrepreneur, and Co-Founder and CEO of Transmit Security. His time working on complex cybersecurity projects in the Israeli military jump-started his founding of a firm that now serves global clients like HSBC, MassMutual, and Lowe’s.
Episode 08: How to Attract Phenomenal Talent in a Post-Pandemic World with Colin McDonagh, Global Program Manager at Facebook
Colin McDonagh, Facebook’s Global Program Manager, shares insights into the challenges and opportunities of an evolving global virtual workforce.
Episode 07: Success, Failure, and the Undeniable Value of Hard Work with Mikita Mikado, CEO at PandaDoc
Mikita Mikado, CEO of PandaDoc, grew up in Belarus after the collapse of the Soviet Union. His non-linear entrepreneurial journey led to the start of the document automation software that now serves 30,000 businesses around the globe.
Episode 06: How to Win Through Authenticity and Perseverance with Six-Time PGA TOUR Champion Billy Horschel
Six-time PGA TOUR Champion, entrepreneur, and philanthropist, Billy Horschel reflects on his path to professional golf, including how to overcome perfectionism, thrive under pressure, persevere through challenges, and how to apply the lessons he’s learned to your business.
Episode 05: How to Speak Entrepreneurship, with Erik Mitisek, CEO at Highwing and Co-Founder Denver Startup Week
Erik Mitisek, CEO at Highwing, Co-Founder Denver Startup Week, and Former Chief Innovation Officer for the State of Colorado, reflects on the process of modernizing commercial insurance and why community and the exchange of ideas are so essential to foster innovation.
Episode 04: The Future of Remote Work with Greg Caplan, CEO at Spot Meetings and Founder at Remote Year
Greg Caplan, CEO of Spot Meetings and Founder of Remote Year, shares how remote work increases productivity, empowers employees, and elevates great leaders.
Episode 03: How to Foster Innovation Using the Skills of a Special Forces Engineer Sergeant, with Eric Schroeder, VP of Operations at Ghost
As VP of Operations at Ghost, a company that brings autonomous driving to your car, Eric Schroeder leverages his military and leadership experience to drive growth and innovation as a technology pioneer.
Episode 02: How to Boost Employee Happiness and Retention Using the Art of Gratitude With “Gratitude Guru” Chris Schembra
“Gratitude Guru” Chris Schembra, founder of consulting firm 7:47 and the Gratitude Experience™, believes that every business should prioritize genuine human connection to accelerate growth and increase employee productivity, purpose, and retention.
Episode 01: How to Build a Business for the Ages, with Robert Herjavec, Founder & CEO, Herjavec Group
Every company wants to be successful. Yet the goalposts for a successful business change constantly in today’s fast-paced world. On the first episode of our podcast, Forge Ahead, Velocity Global CEO Ben Wright interviews Robert Herjavec, CEO of Herjavec Group, reality television star, and former competitive race car driver. Herjavec shares what success looks like for a business leader and how to get there.
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About Velocity Global
Velocity Global accelerates the future of work beyond borders. Its platform helps companies compliantly employ distributed teams and expand internationally through best-in-breed technology, global expertise, and scale. As the largest global Employer of Record (also known as International PEO) in 185 countries and all 50 United States, more than 700 brands rely on Velocity Global to build global teams without the cost or complexity of setting up foreign legal entities or state registrations. Velocity Global offers additional services including Immigration, Independent Contractor Compliance to assess a workforce, and Agent of Record (AoR) to streamline payments to contractors.
About Ben Wright
Ben Wright leads the strategy and growth of Velocity Global and its hundreds of global team members. He applies two decades of experience supporting companies’ global business and remote teams. Wright founded Velocity Global in 2014 as a revolutionary way for companies to expand and hire across global markets. He is a recognized expert on the future of work and global expansion strategies. Wright was a national finalist for EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year. He holds a B.B.A. in Accounting from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame.