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Chief Reality Officer

Who: Jeff Pundyk

Company: Zwirl.com

Age: 40

Has Held Title For: 9 months

Previous Title: Editor in chief of TechWeb and CMPnet, CMP Media Inc.

Life inside a Net company can seem unreal. It’s no different at Zwirl.com, a Web-based “toolmaker” that facilitates group buying at other sites. At Zwirl.com, the opportunities are so big, and the new ideas are so exciting, that it’s easy to lose sight of an important question: How do we turn this energy into reality? Jeff Pundyk’s job is to find an answer to that question.

Why is staying real necessary?

The Internet represents a chance to break out. The energy is fantastic, but getting things done takes discipline.

How do you keep it real?

I’ve become a de facto gatekeeper of sorts: I have to say things such as, “That’s an intriguing idea, but it’s not a realistic one.”

How do you get people to think realistically about ideas?

I have them put their ideas in writing. You can easily dazzle people when you’re standing in front of a whiteboard, but eventually you have to communicate the specifics to others. I want to make sure that we capture good ideas before they disappear.FCS