Wednesday, June 15, 2011
I thought it was high time I got around to announcing the launch of my company - ByteGrid. As the name implies it is the fusion of data (Byte) and Electricity & Telecom infrastructure (Grid) and since we are a data center company, fitting as a short & sweet description.
I few friends have encouraged my to blog about the whole experience and now that we're a real company, I find I have a lot less time to tell the whole story but a few things are important for others to know and were extremely important to me personally to know:
1. Building a company is difficult.
2. Starting a company is more difficult
3. Standing on the other side of the Starting line, with the Finish line out ahead of you is incredibly rewarding and puts the difficulty in perspective
4. Many friends and family will be supportive the first 30 days after the decision to go out and do something on your own, and downright mean and skeptical from then on. They are more scared than you are.
5. Do not EVER let someone talk you out of what you know and believe to be the right way to do something, especially when you hear 'If you changed _________ you would get funded faster...' or anything that dilutes your vision. The vision is yours, not theirs and only you know the right way to execute the vision. A lot of people have money. few have a vision, and even fewer the intestinal fortitude to stay true to their vision.
6. Once you take on other people's money, they have a big say in how things get done. And they should.
7. If you are not used to constant change, competing demands, and like things nice and orderly, you won't like what you're doing. The best laid battle plans change the instant the first shot is fired.
8. Be intimidated by no one. You did something that few people ever do, and even fewer stick with for any length of time, and if they don't understand that, they won't, and keep moving.
9. You won't do it alone. After I brought on partners, it was amazing how quickly things came together and the right compliment of skillsets balanced one another. In our case my partners added deep financial expertise, deeper operational expertise, and legal expertise to my sales talents, and we were a well oiled machine and delegate better than any team I have worked with and for because we know who is best equipped to handle a situation in spite of our egos.
10. If you start a company with the sole reason to make a shit ton of money, then almost every decision you make will be short sighted to that end. If you go into business for yourself because you like it, you will do something better than anything you know of, and is a natural extension of who you are, then the shit ton of money will follow and your decisions will be sound, thought out, and you decide what the right price for your efforts are, not a spreadsheet.
Maybe this helps some of you get off the dime to do something, or keeps others from doing something they are not prepared to do. Either way, it's my experience, my opinions, and the next chapter has yet to be written.
Check out the ByteGrid website, and take a look at our first data center we acquired. It's a Tier IV gem, and I will blog next about why we bought it, and why it is a fantastic facility. I will of course be biased, however, I backed up how solid it is with a lot of money-so I put my money where my mouth is too.
If you want a copy of my data center site selection guide - it's still available. mmacauley at bytegrid. com