Founded in 2015, The Executives’ Club of Fargo-Moorhead is a club designated exclusively for CEOs, Presidents, Founders, and serial entrepreneurs to have extraordinary conversations.
We were lucky enough to interview a number of those visionary leaders and are even luckier to get the chance to share them with you over our next few issues.
Want to join the club? Head to the100.online
About Brian Bestge, CEO Mobile Pro
Brian Bestge started his business in 2003, focusing on video production and advertising. Mobile Pro is a subsidiary of Bestge’s sister company Studio 7 Productions.
“At Mobile Pro, our focus is on producing full-scale events and experiences for our clients,” Bestge said. “Notable clients have been companies like Bell Bank, Blue Cross Blue Shield and American Crystal Sugar. Our company prides itself in full customer service for every event. We truly are a turnkey partner when it comes to event production and planning. This year, we are going to start a program to find an emerging nonprofit that is looking to do its first event to help raise money. The finalist for the program will receive full production services for their inaugural event. More details to come in early 2023.”
What is an important lesson you learned about business in2022?
The new reality of all business is the shortage of everything. Our industry has now been vastly affected by this as well. We now have more opportunities than labor and resources to complete the work. Our company has had little turnover in the past year and we have been blessed to have the best partners and employees in the business. While others have been scrambling to hire, we have been busy building a culture that understands the life and work balance.
What are you most looking forward to in 2023?
Rolling out some amazing new products and ideas to all of our clients will be the most fun thing we get to do this year. Our team has been hard at work dreaming up ideas to take events to a whole other level. We have also teamed up with another production company to ensure we can do more work together for all of our clients.
Take us through typical day in your life.
Each day my leadership team and I talk about how we can best adjust our workflow or systems to be more efficient. This usually starts on a single problem but can grow to ideation of how to best support our colleagues. Next, I generally go around and visit with the tech team about upcoming shows and how I can best help them achieve the outcomes we have identified for those shows. I then finish my day up with one or two key meetings with clients and or business contacts. I’m usually ready for a little time to stop and reflect on my goals for the week.
What’s the worst piece of advice you’ve ever received?
The worst advice was, “you should go talk to so and so, he can help you.” Turns out, so and so was only interested in so and so and not looking to help me advance my idea.
What keeps you up at night?
Letting people down. Here is what I mean: we are all people pleasers in our industry and before the pandemic, it was always foot on the gas and saying yes to everything. I finally realized that foot on the gas involves more than just myself. It involves my entire team and their families. As an owner, if I want to work 80 hours a week, I can choose to do so. However, that’s not the way our staff should be treated. Growth is a good thing but sustainable growth is what really matters. My team is like a family and I want to treat them that way. If keeping my family happy means that we have to let up on the gas, then that’s what needs to be done. The flip side of that coin is that many people who are used to having production services, may not end up being able to be serviced due to this work-life balance we are trying to achieve.
What would you give a Ted Talk on?
I think I could speak about the blessing and the curse of being a 30,000 ft. view guy. Now I know that many people, especially CEOs and owners, are considered to be the visionaries of the company, but I think some of us see things in trends and ideation a bit differently. What I mean is that, good or bad, we see opportunities and problems further out than others.
In a world that is increasingly more divided and polarized, our 30,000 ft. view is getting harder to see more clearly. Case in point, during the pandemic, our company was scheduled to do 15 events in March, April and May prior to the lockdowns. Once everything began to shut down, I knew we had to change the way we were doing our work. Yes, many companies changed and “pivoted” but our company, I feel, was a bit different. We not only changed how we did events but we changed our business model for the future. It’s easy to look back and feel good about what we did, but as visionaries, sometimes the future can be overwhelming and stressful to think about. I would not trade my abilities for anything and, in fact, I feel it’s a really positive skill I’m trying to harness so that I can control it and it does not control me.
How does the reality of your job differ from people’s perception of it?
I think that many people think of production people as “button pushers” or “tech people,” but our crew is more than that. They are like musicians in an orchestra. Yes they play a role, but they know they are part of something bigger. No one musician is more important than another and that is no different for our team members. Events don’t go off without a hitch because we showed up and hit buttons, they go off usually without a hitch because of a large amount of planning and preparation. Mobile Pro’s philosophy is “what helps the client succeed is what we need to plan on.” That’s the secret to our success and to our client’s success.
What’s one thing the local business community could do to help you/your organization/
Patience and grace. We all are living in a world of shortages and less availability of service. As our company continues to grow, please find both of those things within you in dealing with all businesses you interact with. Our company is full of great people and those people do great work. It’s within all of us to encourage and thank those that are continuing to do the work.
If you could thank one person who’s contributed to your success, who would it be and why?
Rick Davis, former CEO of Insight
Technologies, was a key person in my business career. As someone who I had admired and respected, Rick’s insight (not a pun) was so priceless to the growth and success of our company.
What’s your “Why”?
My “why” is simple: I do what I do because I’m a problem solver and, in our business, it is a series of challenges and problems that we get to solve. I love that challenge even though it can have its stress points.
What part of your, job would you use an “Easy Button” on, if you could?
Eliminating assumptions would be a form of an easy button. So many times, communication goes off the rails when people assume things not proven to be true. Any easy button that would eliminate this problem would be nice.
What’s one characteristic you believe every great leader should possess?
The ability to read people and situations is an undeniable characteristic every leader should possess. If you read the room correctly, you can lay the foundation for some great communication.
What’s one way you foster creativity within your organization?
Every year we do personal growth training called Strengths Finder with my wife’s consultant company called Cultivate 21. She is able to show all of us how everyone’s strengths can be a strength to our efforts.
Who’s a leader you’re studying or paying attention to right now?
Love or hate Elon Musk, he is truly a leader I’m paying attention to at this moment.