For decades, entrepreneurs have been steered toward a singular approach to creating a valuable business: pitch idea, raise capital, commercialize the idea, raise more capital and repeat the cycle. This is great for the less than 0.01% of companies that become decacorns, but what about the other 99.9%?

At our April lunch, Buddy Bockweg, CEO of Vsimple, shared how his company is forging a new path forward to focus on people, not products. In his talk, he shared why he believes there has been too much emphasis put on growth over the past decade and not enough on value creation: value for customers, value for employees, value for investors, value for co-founders, value for industry, value for community.

Buddy shared how his team at Vsimple came together, how they developed a recipe to create great value delivered with a personal touch and high-quality service — and how this approach has driven their success. He discussed why a focus on value has to start at the foundational level of the business, requires unwavering belief and self-sacrifice, places relationships over transactions, and MUST be instilled in the culture.

Buddy is an accomplished and results-driven executive focused on helping businesses and their employees thrive in the ever-changing world of work. While he has driven results from some of the world’s most innovative companies, including JP Morgan Chase, YUM Brands, Chick-fil-A, 21c Museum Hotels, Texas Roadhouse, Regions Bank, Humana and many others, he is most proud of the strong relationships he built throughout his journey.

After almost 20 years of solving big challenges of design, distribution, manufacturing and supply chain, Buddy set his sights on a major gap in the industry: a software platform capable of optimizing, streamlining and automating the workflows running through the operations of a business. From quote to cash to customer experience, these processes have predominantly run via grunt work combined with 30-year-old technology.

After decades of watching companies invest in what they did, he knew it was time for companies to start investing in how they did it, so at the end of 2020, Vsimple was born. Buddy is building a team and a company with the mission of delivering the future of work, today. The New Albany-based company has developed a revolutionary, all-in-one workflow management software for the manufacturing industry. Vsimple secured its first institutional funding round in January, and has plans to grow its staff of 10 to about 70 by 2025. 

Buddy holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Louisville. Outside of his professional life, he loves spending time with his children, Henry and Hazel, and wife, Taylor. He’s involved in his church along with local charities, rarely passes up a chance to play 18 holes and loves to be anywhere there is water.