Month: January 2016

Eligo CEO Alexander Goldstein Says Leverage Your Commute to get Ahead in “20 Executives Tell What They Do Every Day to Succeed”


Ever wonder what the most successful people are doing differently than everyone else? It’s not so much about a better education, a robust network of connections, or more open doors as it is about doing the right things day in and out. Here are the habits 20 executives say they incorporate into their lives every day that make the biggest difference when it comes to getting and staying ahead.

1. Don’t accept complaints you can’t resolve.

“Get into the habit of not accepting random complaints about people or things that don’t directly concern you or have immediate resolution. Chronic, random complaining creates a negative energy that counteracts productivity. Hold people accountable for their complaints, and encourage them to direct them to the places where they can get resolved. Don’t allow your office to be a dumping ground.”

–Noelle Federico, CFO of the stock photography site, which boasts more than 12.5 million active users

2. Dress the part.

“When you look good, you feel good. That mantra is something I strive to abide by, whether I am meeting with clients or enjoying lunch on Miami’s coast. When you feel good, you radiate that confidence in such a positive way, and I think it is such a great attribute to have and to feel when you are meeting new people or just in day-to-day business endeavors.”

–Tim Lobanov, managing director of Verzasca Group, a South Florida-based residential and commercial real estate development firm

3. Read the news.

“Always know what’s happening, not just in your industry but around the world. Just because you operate in one industry doesn’t mean another doesn’t have an indirect impact on your business. It’s important to be aware of worldly events and, of course, be aware of what your competitors are doing.”

–Michael MacDonald, chairman and CEO of weight-loss program company Medifast

4. Really listen.

“I read once that one of Abraham Lincoln’s best qualities was that he was a great listener. I think teams that accomplish the most have leaders who spend a lot of time listening.”

–Kevin Pomplun, CEO and co-founder of the car insurance iPhone app Go

5. Pick a theme song for the day.

“I pick a song that can play in the back of my mind, harness my energy, and give me focus for the day. My suggestions–for a major meeting: ‘Ready or Not’ by the Fugees; to get pumped up: ‘Lose Yourself’ by Eminem; and to focus and be productive: ‘Exit Music’ by Radiohead.”

–Elizabeth McMillan, CEO of, which has garnered more than 100 million mobile app downloads

6. Break down barriers.

“In my new role as CEO, I came in with a true desire to immediately get face time with the staff as a whole, in small groups, and one to one. I wanted to break down barriers and not stand on the sidelines, with the objectives of letting the staff get to know me and open up to me, while at the same time getting the team to start [becoming] cross-functional allies. My style is not to get mired in details but to provide vision and set priorities, and then empower the full organization to move forward on execution.”

–Michel Veys, CEO of cloud-based voice and text platform CallFire

7. Take control of your email.

“It’s important to have a strategy for quickly handling your email to ensure the day is not dictated by the sheer volume of it. With every email that comes in, I make a conscious decision to act immediately, delegate, flag for followup, or do nothing. One important consideration is for leaders not to automatically respond to emails that others should address. While challenging, this has a high payoff in making others accountable.”

–Beth Gerstein, co-founder of Brilliant Earth, the global leader in responsibly sourced fine jewelry

8. Clear your mind.

“Every day will present a new challenge, roadblock, or setback that can translate into stress. I’m a big believer in taking time out to do what you love. For me, that’s hockey. Hitting the ice often helps me clear my head and focus.”

–Mark Ghermezian, CEO and co-founder of mobile marketing and CRM companyAppboy

9. Focus on balance.

“Almost all people in successful leadership positions are highly motivated and thrive on the challenges, but often, without warning, you find that you have allowed things to get out of balance, becoming almost one dimensional. Over time, this situation makes you far less effective, especially outside of the day-to-day work environment. You have to make time for other interests. Set aside time for breakfast with your spouse, make sure you work out and stay healthy, and have a hobby that is completely unrelated to your career. It helps make you a more satisfied, effective, and interesting person.”

–Bill Lutz, CFO of Advanced Technology Services, a productivity and profitability service for manufacturers that provides managed services of production equipment maintenance, industrial parts services, and IT solutions

10. Help people each day with the full breadth of your capacity.

“This pays more than you expect in that you’re banking energy in hundreds of micro investments that turn into fruit when you need it most.”

–Dane Atkinson, CEO of SumAll, a data analytics tool that allows customers to view all of their social media, e-commerce, advertising, e-mail, and traffic data in one visualization

11. Listen to classical tunes.

“On the way to work, I always listen to classical music, not for a relaxing experience, but rather a cleansing of the mind. For me, it helps stimulate ideas and starts my day off with confidence no matter the challenges the day might bring.”

–Lior Rachmany, CEO and founder of Dumbo Moving + Storage, a New York City-area residential moving and storage company

12. Plan a trip.

“It is a great escape for me to plan a destination trip and then make arrangements, learn about the culture, pick up basic language skills, and make reservations to great restaurants or sites. Each day, it allows me something to look forward to and gives me perspective that work should not dominate your life. It helps remind me that I work to live, not live to work, and having an escape on my calendar gives me the opportunity to work hard with a reward in sight.”

–Lance Leonard, CEO of True Drinks, and founder of AquaBall, a naturally flavored, zero calorie and zero sugar children’s beverage

13. Leverage the commute.

“Find some podcasts or online courses that you can listen to on your way to or from the office and build up knowledge that while tangential, can help spark ideas for your business too.”

–Alexander Goldstein, CEO of Eligo Energy, a Chicago-based technology-driven energy company that provides electricity to residential and commercial customers in deregulated states


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Eligo Energy helping consumers save on their electricity in Stickney, IL

Muni Aggregation Selects Eligo Energy As Supplier

October 14, 2015

Copyright 2010-15
Reporting by Karen Abbott •

Eligo Energy announced that it has entered into an agreement with the Village of Stickney, Illinois to provide residential and small business customers with electricity through the community’s municipal aggregation program.

Eligo Energy’s agreement will deliver electricity to the residents and small businesses of Stickney for 24 months, beginning in April 2016. Stickney’s negotiated rate will be $0.0620 per kWh with a $4.95 monthly fee

Reprinted from Energy Choice Matters

Mark Friedgan of Eligo Energy in the Las Vegas Review Journal’s “How much does it cost to cover your house in Christmas lights?”

Hundreds of residential lights will make the holiday season merry and ultrabright in the valley. Henderson’s Bob Sacco is adding to the wattage with a 5,000-light display that he began arranging Nov. 1 and built for two weeks.

Sacco, a 61-year-old retired casino chef, and his wife, Peggy, amassed the collection over 15 years. He said its balance has tipped toward energy efficiency; he figures about half his lights are light-emitting diodes. Retailers say LEDs have pushed incandescents to the margins, and a local power official said the more-efficient lights save power and cash for consumers.

No. 1 on NV Energy’s Top 10 power-saving holiday tips is to use LEDs, which it said are cooler, last longer and use 90 percent less energy.

That could mean huge savings. A 2008 report prepared for the Energy Department estimated, based on 2007 data, that holiday light use in the United States accounted for 6.63 terawatt hours annually. A terawatt hour is equivalent to 1 billion kilowatt hours.

Kilowatt hours are the standard unit of residential electricity use. One kilowatt hour of energy is equal to 1,000 watt hours and will power a 100-watt incandescent light bulb for 10 hours. One terawatt is a trillion watt hours, which would power that 100-watt incandescent light bulb for 10 billion hours.

NV Energy Senior Program Manager Douglas Eddie said the average Las Vegas Valley household uses 17,400 kilowatt hours a year. So, the annual holiday power used on U.S. holiday lighting would power 381,034 Southern Nevada households for a year.

Switching all holiday lights to LEDs, the Energy Department report said, could save 5.97 terawatt hours annually nationwide. That would be enough to power 343,103 Nevada homes for a year.

The Christmaslightsetc website illustrates just how much power LEDs save. The site said 265 feet (about 88 yards) of strung incandescent lights would use 1,925 watts, require six electrical outlets to connect and cost $52.21 per season to run. The same-length string of LEDs, by contrast, would use 38 watts, require one electric outlet and cost $1.04 a season, the site said.

“LEDs have become much more widely accepted as people have tried them,” NV Energy Senior Program Manager Douglas Eddie said. “(Consumers have) been pleased with the light quality … they generate less heat and last substantially longer than incandescent bulbs. Some can last 20 to 25 years, longer than the mortgages on some houses.”

And there’s safety

Cooler lighting also boosts safety, Eddie added, minimizing the chance of a tree accidentally igniting.

David Cabrera, manager of the Home Depot at 1401 S. Lamb Blvd., said that seven years ago or so, his shop’s holiday lights stock was 85 percent incandescents and 15 percent LEDs. That mix has inverted, he said; LEDs are now 85 percent, incandescents 15 percent. Eddie predicted incandescents will vanish from the marketplace in the next two years.

Cabrera said consumers prefer LEDs because they produce brighter, clearer light. White LEDs, for example, lack the yellowish tinge white incandescents do, and hues pop.

“The difference in color is like comparing the picture from an old color TV to the one from a brand-new 1080 (pixel) HD TV,” he said.

Both Cabrera and Mike White, assistant manager of the Lowe’s at 5825 S. Eastern Ave., say their stores promoted holiday LEDs weeks before Black Friday, putting large bays of the lights in prominent spots. Cabrera said Home Depot from Nov. 9 through Nov. 15 offered a promotion that let customers trade in strings of incandescents for $5 credits to put toward LEDs.

For shoppers, higher prices have been a drawback for LEDs., a Blacksburg, Va., energy auditor, found in a 2011 comparison that a 100-light General Electric LED Christmas light set cost $26.99 while its incandescent analog cost $9.99. Nevertheless, Eddie said, LEDs’ longer life spans and lower energy needs make them worth the investment.

Mark Friedgan, chief operating officer and co-founder of Chicago-based Eligo Energy, a technology-focused energy retailer, said digital timers will boost holiday lighting’s energy efficiency. These gadgets, many of which include sensors and are operable by smartphone, will make it easier to control how long lights are lit and using energy, he said.

“Even 10 years ago, lighting control systems were luxury items; you’d find them installed only in commercial settings or high-end homes,” Friedgan said. “Now you can get consumer-grade systems that are affordable and come without the expensive installation costs and complicated programming.”

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Eligo featured in Fortune: “This Is When You Should Ditch Your Startup Idea”

The best way for founders to begin a startup’s life is to look for a positive reflection from the market about their ideas.

Startups often fail because the team members neglect to test the market for validation of their idea and don’t look for a measured demand for their solution. Instead, they begin building their product on day one.

If you’re in a position where you’re considering dropping your startup idea, it’s likely you started building your product before you knew there was truly a demand for your solution.

So what now? Firstly, where do you stand? If your burn rate brings you too close to the end of your company life, you may not have many more options. More funding is an option at this point, but you’ll have to explain what you’re going to do differently.

If you do have room to operate, that’s great. Ideally, you need to quickly switch to a model where your progress is measured by what you’re learning about your market. Stop measuring your progress by looking at how much of your product was built today, because you clearly don’t know if there’s a fit just yet.


Read the rest at Fortune Insider