Maybe I should put my wedding anniversary on LinkedIn as like all social media platforms it never forgets anything, which is more than can be said around my wedding anniversary which has nearly been forgot twice.
What any anniversary does personally for me is force reflection and I think everyone will have done that for themselves recently after the anniversary of the first lockdown. (3 weeks to flatten the curve yeh?)
Lockdowns aside in reality this time last year I was a little lost, I just didn’t realise it at the time.
Leaving my last company, founded by my two friends and I, was the hardest thing I have ever done professionally. After 6 years, starting a business from scratch, that you created the name for yourself was a level of sickness I don’t think I have ever felt in a work sense.
I teach my kids to trust your gut instinct, it is there for a reason and if you trust it I believe 9 times from 10 you will be right and moving on was the right thing for me and my “Gut” was correct.
I had been doing some channel consultancy as I came out of my “garden leave” period and I co-own a gym in Leeds called Trident Fitness and that had been a welcome distraction.
The gym is a pension plan, something that is so different to the IT world.
I can see me running that until my dying days, the positive feelings people have from exercise is infectious and I love it however I knew the IT Field was where I need to be for the next stage of my life.
At 44 years old I have worked in distribution for 24+ years, worked for some massively impressive people and personalities and worked with a number of vendor and partner contacts that I genuinely call friends and I just felt like I had more to offer.
This time last year I started talking to an impressive, motivated and driven gentleman called Stephen Burke the CEO of CyberRiskAware more in a consultative role than anything else, but I became energised by him and what he wanted to do.
It was clear that with Stephen at the helm, good technology behind him and an area of the market that was booming they were going to succeed. A few conversations later we realised we could help each other.
If ABC and I did what I have done for 24 years, CyberRiskAware would be a two-tier channel success and it would be the platform ABC needed to become a distributor in its own right, not purely acting as a consultancy.
This was probably the kickstart for me to, I guess find my “Mojo” again and even through the height of lockdown realise that ABC was going to be a success.
Mid to late last year, my now colleague and business partner Ryan found himself in a position where he was looking for his next role and I felt Ryan brought a level of enthusiasm and passion that would help keep the business motivated and that has proven to be a great move for the business, just don’t tell him I said that…
In the 12 months since incorporation ABC has grew at 200,000%. (quite easy when starting from zero but it reads well) and we started 2021 with 4 vendors, all recognised or referred to by Gartner and/Forrester, similar growth strategies and a growing number of VARs/Partners who have taken our technology onboard, listened to our story and have been willing to work with ABC going forward.
This has all been achieved remotely which I know has become the normal but to start a business, bring on 4 vendors and grow all without face-to-face meetings has been a massive success.
It wouldn’t be the right thing to do to name every partner working with ourselves, but we would like to thank every partner. Without you guys ABC would not have progressed this year and when we can see you face to face, the beers are on me!!
Here is to the next year, there are some really exciting things bubbling away in the background and whatever happens the business will grow whilst being Personable, Honest, Knowledgeable, Unbiased and Trustworthy.
You know where we are!