At Acumen, Drew and I wrestle with the “Plain Glass vs. Stained Glass” question a lot.

Plain glass is the everyday normal situations, opportunities, and challenges of running a business. From dealing with people in general, all your constituencies (employees, clients, vendors, partners, community), your internal departments, to ultimately what shows up on the balance sheet and income statement.

Stained glass is what’s in your heart. Why do you do what you do?  How you do it? Stained glass is associated with the bedrock of your personal journey. What truth lies in your heart that then informs how you interact with the world?

We choose to use the word Faith, to describe this stained glass part of your life. That word comes with a lot of head trash for many people.


The “church” and “religion” have not been loving, kind, or relational to many people for many reasons. We understand that. There are times at coffee when we use the “f” word (faith), the shade gets pulled down on the conversation, and it’s time to wrap up. Faith, where you are in it, what you think about it, and how it involves your business isn’t a typical intersection of conversation. Many wonder how the two co-exist, integrate and much less, create value in the battle of the marketplace.

Besides, how does Jesus matter when you just trying to make payroll, need to close one more big deal to make the year, realize that you need to move some people to different seats or off the bus, or are deciding on how and when to transition the business?

Acumen exists to smash these two worlds together. To integrate and decompartmentalize running your business and faith and how those two together increase your impact with the pond you work in, allowing you to create ripple effects that hit your entire circle of influence.


Because people are eternal.

Acumen has been high on the plain glass and intentional on the stained glass. In 2019, we’re going to increase the visibility of the eternal perspective we carry while we double down on building accelerator communities that sharpen, challenge, and inspire CEOs and Owners to grow their business.

For some of you, this may feel weird or seem awkward. That’s good. Looking internally to create an eternal legacy of impact is a big deal. Growth is awkward.

Know that Acumen is NOT a some glorified bible study or fellowship group. We are a community of healthy growing businesses. Acumen is NOT full of prideful, judgmental, accusatory or denominationally rigid partners.  We share values, virtues, and beliefs. Acumen is NOT perfect. We are humble and teachable. We offer trust safety, accountability, and confidentiality while helping you build your business.

Our community is the fastest growing of its kind in the region. And that membership in our community includes fastest growing companies, Inc. 5000 companies, best places to work, healthiest employers, and top small businesses in the state, truly some of the very top businesses in the region.

Interested in leveling up your business in 2019? Apply today.

Dan Cooper
Post by Dan Cooper
February 8, 2019
Dan Cooper co-founded ej4, a video-based online training company, in 2003, and was its CEO until selling in 2012. During his time with ej4, he grew the company from a startup to a nationally-recognized firm, serving clients including Pepsi-Cola, Dr. Pepper Snapple, Honeywell, Monsanto and Syngenta. Channel partners included SAP and Oracle. As of the 2012, ej4 was serving 1,000+ customers, delivering millions of program views, was highly profitable and debt-free. Today, he is the CEO of Acumen, a mastermind community platform built for CEOs and Owners of strong and growing companies. He and his wife, Ali, have three children and attend Cure of Ars church in Leawood, KS. Dan enjoys running, all things soccer — coaching, playing and watching —and burning all types of meat on the backyard barbecue grill.