The Tandy Executive Speaker Series featured Greg Forgatch, former CEO and co-founder of eHarmony from 1999 to 2006. Forgatch shared how the “number one trusted online dating site” came about.
Forgatch and Dr. Neil Clark Warren, current eHarmony CEO and co-founder, launched the Los Angeles-based website 16 years ago.
While most online dating sites display pictures of members and their professions, eHarmony matched people based on the compatibility of their characteristics–not by their appearances.
“What we require at eHarmony initially is that no photos are shown and no jobs are listed,” Forgatch said.
The site provides matches based on compatibility tests, which Forgatch said makes matches more likely to last.
About 438 eHarmony members are getting married on a daily basis in the U.S. after being matched on the site, according to eHarmony‘s website.
Regardless of the site’s popularity, Forgatch said the concept of being first in the market was not his priority. There will be obstacles and challenges, but Forgatch said he still would have preferred “doing it right” to provide reliable matching services to users.
Homer Erekson, John V. Roach dean of the Neeley School, interviewed Forgatch and praised the compatibility matching services and the psychological effect it brings in terms of compatible long-term relationships.
“It’s not just about matching services,” Erekson said, “It’s about helping people have healthy relationships.”