Custom-built for leaders of mid-sized, high-growth companies. Leaders of middle-market companies face lofty challenges: how to sustain growth, how to lead significant change, how to capture ideas and turn them into competitive wins. You can’t tackle these alone. At Build’s high-impact, day-long event you will huddle with fellow leaders of middle market companies for an insider perspective on challenges … and road-tested solutions. Expect unparalleled networking, highly interactive sessions, key actionable takeaways, and an afternoon cocktail party! By invitation only.







“ABC” (“Always Be Capturing”)

Challenge: Idea flow is my company’s lifeblood—but how can we capture them so that the best ones help us win?
Solution: Install simple practices and rules that ensure that ideas get captured as they emerge, and that the best ones spread. HubSpot’s Josh Porter, Director of UX, will present the mechanisms HubSpot has successfully deployed to keep ideas from getting away. (Plus, meet “graphic recorder” Kelvy Bird, visual chronicler of conversations at Davos and around the world, who will be capturing the Build Live: Boston event in drawings for participants to take away.)

How to Turn Your Business Into an Execution Machine—By Mastering “the Art of Adherence”

Challenge: Among the most common CEO laments is: “We plan, we innovate…. Why can’t we execute?”
Solution: Master “the art of adherence”—a tested, validated system for enabling an organization to execute best what it needs to do most. This workshop details the practical steps that drive execution excellence, including: how to identify the one activity that will most directly help you execute your plan; how to track leading and lagging indicators of progress; and how to “ritualize” your team so that you can both ignite and sustain their passion for execution. The session will be led by best-selling management thinker Lee Colan (Stick With It—the Art of Adherence), who for more than a decade has helped companies close the “knowing-doing gap.”

Coffee Break & Networking


Six Strategies for Making Change Stick (Hint: Connections Matter)

Challenge: To get better, our companies (and we ourselves) have to evolve. But only 38% of leaders say their change efforts have actually resulted in improved performance. How can we leaders win “buy-in” and make change stick?
Solution: Change by dictum doesn’t work. The only thing that does: connections, and lots of them. Studies show that effective change makers simultaneously employ the six strategies presented in this session to build the individual, social, and structural connections that make transformation not just possible but exciting for an organization. Speaker: Maya Townsend, founder of Partnering Resources.





All Growth is Not Created Equal (Management Lessons from the Build Genome Project)

Challenge: How do we get to the next level? For all the advice about how to grow, which management moves are proven to drive sustained growth?
Solution: Learn from the path-breaking Build Genome Project–the first statistically valid, evidence-based research revealing which management actions and company strategies drive growth and which don’t. As it turns out, some of the most common growth goals are likelier to hurt your company than help it. Speakers: Build economist-in-residence Dr. Gary Kunkle and George Gendron, managing director of New Ventures at Build and Inc., and former founding editor of Inc. Magazine.

Coffee Break & Networking


Keynote: HubSpot’s Brian Halligan on Fixing the Biggest Marketing Problem in Business

Challenge: With traditional marketing ineffective and so easily avoidable by audiences these days, how can my business find customers?

Solution: Instead of trying to find customers, enable customers to find you. To be found (and thrive) in the new natural marketplace, you’ve got to attract modern marketers and implement inbound marketing strategies. This can be done by using the width of your brain not the width of your wallet, says session leader Brian Halligan, the founder and CEO of HubSpot. Learn from Halligan’s business playbook what’s really going on in the customer relationship landscape; why your business must adapt; exactly how to convert your efforts; and where within your organization should change take place. By rethinking the way you look at and approach content, the Internet, social media, and your clients/customers, you can reposition (and solidify) your place in this ever-changing business landscape.


Cocktail Party

Wrap up the afternoon with fellow middle market leaders. Talk up the day’s key learnings, expand your social circle and meet Brian Halligan of HubSpot and the entire Build Team!

Kelvy Bird
Graphic Recorder

Kelvy Bird translates content and dynamics into visual, tangible formats to aid with reflection and decision-making. With over 18 years experience in collaborative and multi-stakeholder environments, Kelvy describes her work as ‘The Fine Art of Listening,’ a way of scribing that honors both the implicit and explicit aspects of conversations. Current partners and clients include: The World Economic Forum, as a member of The Value Web (, MIT Sloan Executive Education, Harvard Ed and Business Schools, The Nature Conservancy, The Presencing Institute, in addition to Fortune 100 companies, the US governments and cities such as Tucson and Somerville.

Lee J. Colan
Cofounder, The L Group

Lee J. Colan, Ph.D., is cofounder of The L Group, a Dallas, Texas-based consulting firm launched in 1999 that has served a client list that includes Fortune 500 companies, mid-sized businesses, emerging businesses, and non-profit institutions.

He has built a track record of successfully managing the challenges of rapid organizational change. Prior to starting The L Group in 1999, Lee worked in various leadership roles with American Airlines, Sandoz (Novartis) and FoxMeyer (McKesson). He also held consulting positions with Booz, Allen & Hamilton and William Mercer. His last corporate post was as VP for Physician Reliance Network, one of the fastest growing NASDAQ companies at the time. In addition to 25 years of hands-on industry and consulting experience, Lee earned Master’s and Doctoral degrees in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from George Washington University, and has authored 12 popular books that have been translated into 10 languages. His latest is Stick with It: Mastering the Art of Adherence an enhanced and expanded 10-year follow-up to his bestseller.

Brian Halligan
CEO & Founder, HubSpot

Brian Halligan is CEO & Co-Founder of HubSpot, an all-in-one marketing software company he co-founded six years ago to help businesses transform the way they market their products. Since its founding, HubSpot has accumulated over 7,500 customers, has been ranked as the second fastest growing software company on the Inc. 500, one of the 20 most promising companies in America by Forbes, and the eighth fastest growing technology company in the world by the Deloitte Fast 500. He is a Senior Lecturer at MIT where he teaches 15.S16 Entrepreneurial Product Development and Marketing. He is author of two books: Marketing Lessons From the Grateful Dead and Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs, which is in its seventh printing, has sold more than 50,000 copies, has been translated into nine languages, and peaked at #17 overall on the Amazon bestseller list. Brian was named an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2011 New England award recipient. In his spare time, he sits on a few boards of directors, follows his beloved Red Sox, goes to the gym, and is learning to play guitar.

George Gendron
Managing Director of New Ventures, The Build Network & Inc.

George Gendron was the Editor-in-Chief of Inc. Magazine for 20 years, from its start-up through its sale to Bertelsmann in 2000. During that time, Gendron led a team that created the world’s premier brand for entrepreneurs. They launched the Inc. 500 in the early 1980s, which quickly became an international brand in its own right. In 1997, Gendron partnered with Michael Porter, legendary professor of strategy at the Harvard Business School, to create the Inner City 100, focusing national attention on the entrepreneurial ecosystem in our nation’s urban areas. In 2000, Gendron designed and launched the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Clark University in Massachusetts—one of the first in the country for undergraduate students in the arts and sciences. In 2010, Gendron joined Mansueto Ventures, publisher of Fast Company and Inc. magazines, as Managing Director of New Ventures. The new-venture group launched Build in fall 2011, and is currently launching the Build 100 and the Build Genome Project, which together constitute an ambitious national research collaborative designed to identify the key drivers of sustainable entrepreneurial growth.

Michael S. Hopkins
Managing Director & Editor-in-Chief, The Build Network

Before cofounding Build with its core launch team as Build’s managing director and editor-in-chief, Michael Hopkins was editor-in-chief of the MIT Sloan Management Review. There, he led an award-winning turnaround of the journal and website by reinventing its business model and refocusing its mission to make it the premier source of thought leadership about managing innovation and about the business forces changing how innovation is managed. Hopkins’s early career in media included positions at Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, and Inc. Magazine, where he was Executive Editor from 1991 to 2003. From 2003 to 2007 he led a collaboration between The Monitor Group strategy consultancy and The Financial Times to create a wisdom-of-crowds experiment called—a website and self-organizing online community of thought leaders aimed at identifying “what business will need to know next.” Hopkins has written widely, and his feature work on management has been anthologized in the book series, The Best Business Stories of the Year (Vintage).

Gary Kunkle
Advising Economist, The Build Network

Dr. Gary Kunkle studies, writes, and consults on the topic of sustained firm growth. Kunkle is a research fellow at the Institute of Exceptional Growth Companies, an Advising Economist with Inc. magazine and Build, and president of Outlier, LLC, a consultancy that provides contract research to private equity. Previously, Kunkle was managing director of the State of Maryland’s European Office, located in the Netherlands. He holds a PhD in Public Policy and Regional Economy from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; an MBA and an MA in International Management from the University of Texas at Dallas; and a BA in Political Science from Texas A&M University.

Scott Leibs
Executive Editor & Director of Partner Media, The Build Network

Former editor-in-chief of CFO magazine (2008-2012), and a former editor at Fidelity Investments and InformationWeek magazine, Scott has spent more than 20 years distilling the useful and interesting from the incoherent and confusing. During his tenure, CFO was named Magazine of the Year by three different journalism organizations.

Ilan Mochari
Chief Writer, The Build Network

After graduating from Yale University, Ilan spent more than four years on the staff of Inc. (1998-2002). He has freelanced for CFOFortune Small Business, the MIT Sloan Management Review, and Harvard Business Publishing. He has published a novel, Zinsky the Obscure, and several short stories.

Ashley Bond O’Brion
Art Director, The Build Network

Ashley has spent the majority of her career as a magazine designer. She’s worked at Boston magazine; O, The Oprah Magazine; and Maine magazine, among others. At Build, she divides her efforts between design work on Build’s platforms and providing Build-level creative direction to key Build partners and their custom-media projects.

Joshua Porter
Director of UX, HubSpot

Josh Porter is director of UX at HubSpot, which he joined when HubSpot acquired Performable, where he was cofounder and VP of customer experience. He has written the current incarnation of the Bokardo blog ( for six years with articles about interface design, social interaction, identity, recommendations and other issues related to design, and he’s currently writing a book called Make Them Care! focused on the design and marketing of product websites. He is also the cofounder of 52 Weeks of UX, a premier UX blog with a strong readership of over 10,000 UX professionals. Before HubSpot and Performable, he was an interface designer for a decade.

Anni Rodgers
Director of New Projects & Web Director, The Build Network

A veteran of Rolling Stone Online and Fast Company, Anni began her career studying and profiling rising stars in the business world. After earning her MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School, she founded an independent consulting company delivering digital strategy to growing magazines. As web director for Build, she’s relaunched, forged a custom microsite business, and worked to develop a proprietary survey platform called the xChange. She now leads the day-to-day execution of Build’s portfolio of new projects.

Maya Townsend

Maya Townsend helps leaders, teams, and organizations thrive in our networked world. As founder and lead consultant of Partnering Resources, she advises executives in strategic planning, business ecosystems, and driving change efforts that stick. She advises Gartner on change management practices and she has taught courses on leadership, strategy, and collaboration at Boston University and Northeastern University. @mayapare