In a world where the line between self and other has become almost a chasm, we are pleased to discover one brave soul who is venturing out into the world to bring purpose back to profitability. Meet Steve Glenn, a focused businessman who dreamed of being an architect as a kid, but has grown instead to become a man who has melded his love for design with diligence in the real estate world as an entrepreneur.
Steve Glenn is the founder and CEO of Plant Prefab, the first prefabricated home factory in the nation dedicated to sustainable construction, materials, processes, and operations. Plant was born out of LivingHomes, the award-winning design agency Glenn founded in 2006 that now serves as Plant’s in-house studio.
Before LivingHomes and Plant Prefab, Glenn was founder and CEO of PeopleLink, a leading provider of enterprise community solutions; founding partner of idealab, a business incubation firm that raised and invested $1 billion in a number of successful companies; co-director of the Virtual Reality Studio at Walt Disney Imagineering; and co-founder of Clearview Software, which was sold to Apple Computer in 1988.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What makes your business unique?
Steve Glenn: We design and manufacture sustainable custom high quality homes and work with world class architects. Our process offers clients a more cost effective approach to home building with a parallel construction model that is cost effective, time saving, and more dependable.
Beverly Hills Magazine: That’s great! I’m also a real estate broker, and I commend you on what you’re doing not just for teh going green movement, but for the real estate industry as well. So, what does it mean to be an entrepreneur for you?
Steve Glenn: Well, there are many ways to define an entrepreneur. I am a Founder entrepreneur who started a company and brought it to fruition, but an entrepreneur could be someone who joins a team, and leaves a day job to become part of a startup and who is willing to take a chance.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Right, venturing into the unknown. Entrepreneurship is all about being willing to take risks.
Steve Glenn: Exactly.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What is the most challenging thing about being an entrepreneur?
Steve Glenn: Being an entrepreneur is poster child for challenge. This is an inexorable process especially in a startup: You get excited…then you discover a lot of problems you hadn’t anticipated and you get bummed…Then you get excited again, and later a lot of problems you hadn’t anticipated show up again….It’s a real seesaw …I have a 100 yard stare about these things. When challenges arise, I say, “This too shall pass,” and when things are good, “This too shall pass.”
Beverly Hills Magazine: My goodness, that’s so true. It’s definitely an adventure! But as a born-again Christian I believe the devil is always throwing his fiery darts at us to attempt to pull us off track, because he knows if we fulfill our destiny, the call on our heart to pursue, we’re gonna change the world for the greater good. I liken it to a fight. No matter how many times we get knocked down, we gotta get back up and get back in the fight. Victory is ours. What is the most rewarding part for you?
Steve Glenn: Seeing something that you thought was a good idea come to fruition…
Beverly Hills Magazine: Absolutely! We are made in God’s image, we are born to create! And we can create anything…That’s what I love about it…creating something from nothing! What is the greatest factor(s) that you attribute your success to?
Steve Glenn: It’s a combination of being stubborn, persistent, a visionary, and naive.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Hahaha! I love that. What have been major obstacles/stepping stones that you overcame to achieve your success? Major professional failure …Personal challenges…the inevitable…death of loved ones, to break ups…all the stuff that complicates it…
Steve Glenn: Major professional failure …Personal challenges, and the inevitable; death of loved ones to break ups…all the stuff that complicates it.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Who or what have been your inspirations?
Steve Glenn: My Mom, my grandmother, my son.
Beverly Hills Magazine: If you had to give a piece of advice to aspiring entrepreneurs out there, what would it be?
Steve Glenn: Get clear on what the problem you’re trying to solve and the solution you purport to solve it. Make sure there is a really good connection between the problem and your solution.
Beverly Hills Magazine: That’s excellent advice. Do you have a life motto, quote, or Bible Scripture you live by?
Steve Glenn: When hungry, eat, when tired, sleep… But really…Be here now.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Yes!!! We have to be fully present in the moment that is what is means to live. Man people dwell in the past, but life is NOW! All we have is this moment, and we are lucky if we have the next! Mine is Matthew 19:26, “With GOD all things are possible.”…It’s this truth that has allowed me to maintain a limitless mindset that I can accomplish anything because God is with me. What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned from your life journey?
Steve Glenn: I don’t know if I can answer that, but I try to live by the golden rule, and do unto others as I would have them do unto me.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Well, if you live by that you’re not too far from the Kingdom of Heaven. Life is so much more than chasing the buck. It’s all about discovering our purpose; the God call on our life. Have you discovered a personal purpose in what you do?
Steve Glenn: I’m trying to do business which weds profit and purpose — by improving the human condition, improving communities, and the planet.
Beverly Hills Magazine: That’s wonderful! What do you want to be remembered for?
Steve Glenn: For being a good friend, a good son, a good father, and a good boss.
Beverly Hills Magazine: If God granted you one wish, what would you wish for?
Steve Glenn: I would wish for peace, love, and understanding.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Well, the Good News is Jesus Christ can give you that. LORD, I pray that you would give dear Steve peace, love, and understanding. In Jesus’ Name. Amen!
Glenn is also a co-founder and chair of the Sustainable Business Council, co-founder of the Kaia Parker Dance Endowment, and a co-founder and former board member of Hope Street Group and the Brown University Entrepreneur Forum.
All Plant projects are prefabricated in the company’s 62,000-square-foot home factory in Rialto, CA, with a patented building system defining a new standard in residential home design and construction, helping individuals, architects, and developers alike efficiently design and build high-quality, cost-efficient, healthy homes. Start building your new home today!