Serial entrepreneur and author of Second Stage Entrepreneurship, Dan Weinfurter recently founded and is CEO of GrowthPlay, an integrated sales effectiveness business with backing from Driehaus Private Equity in Chicago. Previously, he was the founder and CEO of two other private equity-backed businesses and was the No. 2 executive for a third. All three achieved high rankings on the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing private companies, with Parson Group, his first start up, landing the coveted #1 spot. He has also provided consulting and interim management to a variety of start-ups and large public companies.This spring, as Adjunct Lecturer at The Kellogg School of Management, he teaches a class on “Human Capital and Enterprise Scaling.”
Prior to forming GrowthPlay, Dan was the co-founder and CEO of Capital H Group LLC. A Chicago-based international talent and leadership solutions company, Capital H helped clients organize, attract, develop and reward their people in order to improve business performance. It grew from start-up in 2003 to an international company in 2007, serving some of the world’s largest businesses out of eight U.S. offices and a London location. Capital H was ranked on the Inc. 5000 list in 2006, 2007 and 2008.
Dan formed Capital H after being founder and CEO of Parson Group, LLC. Also an international firm, Parson Group focused on consulting services for the finance, accounting and business systems areas of large organizations. Revenues grew from zero in mid-1995 to a run rate of over $90 million in 2001, making it the fastest-growing private company in America. In May of 2002, Parson Group was sold to Management Consulting Group, PLC, a UK-based public company, and renamed Parson Consulting. Dan stayed on in a transitional role as chief executive of Parson until late November 2002.
Before forming Parson Group, Dan was the number two executive for Alternative Resources Corporation (ARC). He joined ARC during its second year of business as head of field sales and operations, when revenues were less than $3 million. He departed 5 years later as the company surpassed $100 million in revenue (all organic growth) and became the second best-performing IPO on NASDAQ in 1994. ARC was ranked #13 on the 1993 Inc. 500 and #40 on the 1994 Forbes list as a public company. While at ARC, he expanded the number of field offices from 5 to 35 throughout North America and built out several new service offerings, including the successful consulting and outsourcing businesses.
Dan started his career at General Electric, where he entered its sales training program after graduating college in 1979. In his eight years at GE, Dan was promoted into positions of increasing responsibility in sales, marketing management and sales management in four cities. After leaving GE, he joined Intelogic Trace for three years.
Born and raised in Wisconsin, Dan received a BS and MBA from Marquette University. He has served as a Director of Brill Street + Company, Direct Fit Inc., TalentDrive, Corporate Technology Communications and CPRi. Dan was also the Chairman of the President’s Advisory Council for the YWCA of Chicago and a mentor with the Clinton Foundation’s Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence. He currently serves on the boards of Colonnade Advisors and Thermo Fluids and is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago.