Managing directors, Ben Cikanek and Mike Klar began delivering collaborative solutions over ten years ago at Ernst & Young’s Accelerated Solutions Environment where they enjoyed rigorous training in Matt and Gail Taylor’s design thinking methodologies for exacting business transformation through collaboration. They have since designed and facilitated hundreds of sessions for Fortune 100 companies and their private equivalents.
Previously, Ben and Mike worked under visionary entrepreneur, Paul Budnitz, at the art toy company, Kidrobot. While overseeing the company’s operations and retail business, Ben launched Kidrobot’s apparel line in collaboration with Barneys New York, built store galleries in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and London, and opened The Kidrobot Room in Toronto, a nightclub filled with larger-than-life-sized toys.
Mike oversaw Kidrobot.com, expanding web sales and nurturing intense brand loyalty through unique virtual experiences across the company’s social media channels, website and the popular Kidrobot blog which he originated.
Ben began his career as a Management Consultant with Ernst & Young, while Mike started as an Art Director with Saatchi & Saatchi, developing web apps in the early days of eCommerce for global clients like General Mills, Proctor & Gamble, and Kodak.
Presently, Ben and Mike are also co-Artistic Directors at Firework Theater where they have staged eight plays on the New York stage, two of which were written by Ben, four directed by Mike.