Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant. – Robert Louis Stevenson
Think about it. Enduring successes emerge out of a certain magic when the positive forces within us unite with complementary powers in others, igniting meaningful mutual actions to accomplish higher beneficial purposes. Personal and group inertia melts away in the moment – undergoing metamorphoses into new collective wills. Forced work often fails, but collaborative work that sparks our imagination gains lasting synergies that move worlds large and small even during the most trying of situations. Each adds to another.
There is no lack of need for such enlightened efforts or lack of caring committed people to take up the yokes to improve upon and overcome critical challenges and entropies. What is often missing is a catalyst to ignite the initial reactions. BizCatalytics helps people – and their organizations and communities – see and synthesize such movement, bringing out their inner forces of nature across pluralistic horizons.
The following examples illustrate the great powers of catalytic action at work in business, university, nonprofit, and government sectors. Many other examples can be shared as part of our relationship-building conversations about how we can work together to catalyze progress in your domains and directions. A few stories and outcomes from associated Burge/BizCatalytic projects:
Intel Corporation: Burge conceived and initiated an expanded regional workforce training program to overcome a critical local skilled workforce challenge that enabled Intel's multi-billion dollar plant expansion and the hiring of 2,000+ workers. The training program engaged seven community colleges from outside the traditional urban hiring area to train workers to meet the workforce demand. Without this program, Intel would have expanded its operations elsewhere. Following the program's smash success, Intel exported and implemented this regionally expanded workforce development model to its plants worldwide. Results: New multi-billion investment and thousands of high paying construction, operations, and manufacturing jobs. New training model used globally, empowering thousands more people and solving critcal labor force issues.
Endowments for University Excellence: Substantial endowments of key entrepreneurial university chairs have been a proven model to alter and grow regional economies. Think California's Silicon Valley and the endowed chairs at Stanford and UC Berkeley. Think Boston and its chairs at MIT, Harvard, and 60+ universities in a 100-mile radius. Think North Carolina's Research Triangle and its Duke, Wake Forest, UNC, and NCSU. Think Austin and its UT. Endowing illustrious chairs draws students and their budding ideas which become the Googles in their regions. Because of Burge's entrepre-missionary stirrings about endowing such chairs at NM universities and his newspaper columns touting this gateway strategy, he was recruited to be the industry co-chair to head up the NM Council of University President's new endowed chairs development program. Results: The new Endowment for University Excellence program raised a legacy $20 million+ in evergreen resources to kick off and support endowed chairs and lecturers at 25 colleges and universities statewide. Full economic impacts of these investments take decades to manifest but the boat is on the water.
Adelante Development Center and Presbyterian Medical Services (PMS): Adelante and PMS each promote and provide health and well-being to some of the most challenged populations. Adelante works with citizens with disabilities in need for healthcare, living environments, and employment opportunities. PMS's regional health clinics and Head Start programs reach the most impoverished citizens who otherwise lack healthcare and educational access. Burge introduced both organizations to new growth funding sources that dramatically expanded their services with society's most needy groups. Adelante programs were featured on NBC Nightly News. Results: Year-on-year program growth adding substantial new and sustained operational and financial resources. These benefits have added up to $30-40 million+ and hundreds of new jobs over 15+ years of programmatic investments and actions.
New Mexico Small Business Development Centers (NMSBDC) – Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP): Maximizing the strengths in local businesses and economies demands that these firms tap into and leverage all available sales opportunities for their goods and services. Burge, as NMSBDC statewide board chair, initiated the implementation of the DOD's regional PTAP program to help small businesses train for and deliver on public and private contracting opportunities to grow their businesses. Results: The NMSBDC statewide network developed seven PTAP partner sites at local SBDCs and hired new staff to power up the procurement training across the state. The PTAP program added $600K+ to the annual NMSBDC budget, a net PTAP budget total now approaching $6 million in new cumulative funding over the life of the program. Hundreds of SBDC/PTAP clients have used these services to expand their businesses.
McKinley Paper/Bio-Pappel International: Burge changed the global cardboard recycling industry. Working with a site selection consultant representing an Australian paper company seeking a location for what became the $100 million dollar McKinley Paper cardboard recycling plant, their exchange drew on Burge's intersectional knowledge depth. The project specs required rail access and purchasing substantial volumes of natural gas to burn to make steam to break down the cardboard in the process. Burge proposed using waste steam from the rail-served Plains Electric's Prewitt Generating Station instead of buying and burning natural gas. The paper company or the industry had never considered setting up such a steam-driven cogen system. Pursuing this option the company built the facility, saved millions in fuel costs, and exported the idea to paper recycling plants around the world. The Australian company sold subsequently the McKinley Paper operation to Bio-Pappel, a Mexican paper company. Results: The plant makes paperboard, operating 24/7, 365 days per year, with approximately 125 employees. It generates 225,000 tons of recycled paperboard annually – saving 17 trees per ton. Raw materials are delivered by box car and by semi truck. The plant processes 1,200 bales of cardboard a day (like those bales generated by grocery stores), drawing materials from across the western US. 40-60 trucks leave the plant loaded every day. BioPappel won the 2011 Pulp and Paper International Water Efficiency Award for its water recycling conservation program. (Info partially excerpted from Cibola Beacon, 3/16/2012)
Advanced Manufacturing and Innovation Center (AMIC) – Pennsylvania State University: Burge engaged PSU's Behrend Campus leadership in brainstorming and focusing their Open Lab efforts on advanced manufacturing at Behrend's Knowledge Park (one of PSU's university research parks). His consulting work identified and prepared a federal grant for PSU targeting university-based advanced manufacturing industry partnerships. This early work stimulated and established a new direction for the school in developing a unique national advanced manufacturing model partnering the engineering and business schools on campus with regional and national companies. Results: Penn State Behrend opened the $16 million+ next generation AMIC in 2016. Since opening, the AMIC has already hosted a national meeting and worked with a number of regional companies to advance their manufacturing processes.
The perspectives of others are often worthy indicators of a person's value among his peers. A few of Burge's colleagues and project associates have had these things to say about his catalytic capabilities and capacities:
Karl Baehr, Director, Business and Entrepreneurial Studies, Emerson College, Boston; Managing Director, InterTerra New Media Group, Atlanta: "Randy is a visionary and an innovator in the purest sense. He sees the entrepreneurial landscape of the future and works to get us there NOW! What he has done for entrepreneurs is incredibly invaluable and we thank you!"
Yenny Cocq, Internationally Acclaimed Sculptor and Artist, Yenny Cocq Gallery; Cocq Business Consulting: "Randy is the most and best connected person in New Mexico and beyond. He is a dynamo and a fantastic public speaker with brilliant brainstorming skills. Get connected to Randy!"
David Cohn, Senior Director, Advanced Digital; Editor, Wired.com's Assignment Zero: "Without a doubt Randy brings an exuberance and character to what he does. I believe that no matter what he attempts, if he brings that same passion along with him, he will succeed."
Jeff Howe, Visiting Scholar at MIT; Author, Crowdsourcing: Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the Future of Business; Contributing Editor, Wired Magazine; Assistant Professor, Northeastern University: "Randy's work at [Wired.com's] Assignment Zero was exemplary, in the definitive sense. He conducted an interview with Innocentive founder Alpheus Bingham, the results of which were truly best of breed (out of a pool of some 80 other interviews.)"
Jim Manatt, Co-Founder, Blue Sierra Power; CEO, Thrust Energy/Providence Technologies, Inc; Former Regent at New Mexico State University: "Randy is a visionary member of the creative class. His entrepreneurial knowledge, drive, desire to innovate and succeed make him a unique leadership resource for new ventures."
Tim Nisly, Chief Executive Officer, Sinc, at the Rio Grande Community Development Corporation; Co-Founder and Emcee, TEDxABQ: "I've interacted with Randy in a variety of settings, and I always appreciate his ability to look at challenges in a unique and powerful way. He's got a great way of communicating with people and connecting with people, and he's got that visionary spark that makes him a true asset in almost any setting. He's a remarkable person, and I'd recommend him very highly in any setting."
Ron Tafoya, Senior Security Researcher & Consultant; Former Senior Security Researcher, Intel Corporation; Former Director, New Mexico Office of Science & Technology: "Randy is a tremendously motivated contributor to the development of the Information Technology Industry. He has been very effective at putting collaborative efforts together to enhance opportunities for this Industry in New Mexico. He is tireless, well focused, and energetic in these efforts and continually motivates others to contribute to the development of the Industry."
Jasper Welch, Founder & E-I-R, DurangoSpace; E-I-R, Southwest Colorado Accelerator Program for Entrepreneurs (SCAPE); CEO, Four Corners Management Systems; Former CEO, International Business Innovation Association (IBIA): "Randy is a conceptual and creative thinker, a rare talent these days, in the era of copy cat and group thinking. He's a hard worker, with multiple experiences and expertise. His ability to connect people, ideas and organizations is something to behold. We are fortunate to have had Randy coworking out of DurangoSpace."