Conversations with… Bennett Van Wert, DWM

(L-R) Hannah Van Wert and Bennett Van Wert, DWM

The Director of Sales & Development at DWM discusses the beauty of Lake George, the mouth-watering perfection of New York-style cheese pizza, and why good things will happen if you are focused, build great habits and keep learning. 

What is the most cherished item in your home office?
A notepad and a whiteboard.

What is your favorite time to get things done?
I am usually up at 5:15 a.m. to plan my day and workout (although the gyms are just now opening here in New York). I am big on time-blocking my most important tasks for the day from 8 a.m.-10 a.m. so that by lunch it has already been a super productive day.

What is the soundtrack that plays in the background of your office?
My commute it about 40 minutes each way, so it is always Audible while I am driving—mostly business and non-fiction. At work, I listen to music to help me focus.

How are you staying connected with your team? Customers?
Our company switched to Microsoft Teams just before COVID hit. Everyone adopted this really well and video calls are now the norm between our offices in Latham, New York and Orlando, Florida. Since we have not traveled to go see our clients since March, we have been able to do video calls with many of them as well. During a time like this, it remains super important for teams and clients to all be on the same page as initiatives, goals and standard practices change. I think we have done a great job being proactive in this area.

Name the band you cannot take off your playlist.
Red Hot Chili Peppers (with John Frusciante).

What are you binge watching right now?
“Breaking Bad” for the fourth time. Luckily, my wife is a huge fan, too.

What is the coolest thing you have done since the pandemic hit?
In June I was elected to the Board of Directors for a local not for profit, The Lake George Association. I was extremely fortunate to grow up on the northern end of Lake George—one of the cleanest, most beautiful lakes in the world. Being able to give back to the preservation of its word-class water is something extremely important to me.

What sports have you been watching (or waiting to watch)?
Excited to have football on again. I played rugby in college, so that is a good fill-in for football too.

Favorite comfort food.
A perfectly made NY-style cheese pizza.

Biggest influence in your life?
I have been fortunate to be surrounded by great people my entire life, both personally and professionally. My parents were entrepreneurs, so growing up in that environment had a huge impact on me and my career. I continue to learn as much as I can from the people around me every day, especially with the leadership team here at DWM. It is a fun and motivating team.

What trait do you most admire?
A growth mindset.

What advice would you give your younger self?
Your happiness and success in success in life—however you personally define each—is completely up to you. Good things will happen if you are focused, build great habits and keep learning. Be patient, persistent and humble.

What is the first thing you are going to do when you are able to get back to some sense of normalcy?
My wife and I were married in September 2019 and had our honeymoon to Sint Maarten (the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Caribbean) cancelled. We also had our one year anniversary trip to San Diego cancelled. I love to travel, so I am most excited to be able to take a vacation, to finally have a honeymoon (tentatively scheduled for January 2021), and then to travel once again to see clients.

 

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