This weekend I had a rare opportunity fall into my lap, really. Well, I say “this weekend” but by that I mean I’ve been working on this opportunity for quite a while, it’s just finally come to fruition. Before I get to that, though, you should probably have a little bit of backstory. Living in Kansas City, there isn’t much along the lines of a startup atmosphere, especially in tech. When you think of tech startups, you’d think of tech hubs like Silicon Valley or New York or D.C., maybe even Atlanta. I’ve worked for a few of these places (remotely, of course, thank Slack) and what’s really amazing about them is just how hungry everyone is to be doing something awesome. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of bad things about startup culture that can backfire horrendously (especially if you’re a bright eyed and bushy tailed midwestern kid thinking he’s going to go out and change the world by working for one of these places), but for the most part I really do like startups.
A big reason for why I like starups so much is because startups don’t have miles of red tape and they don’t have arduous processes around each and every aspect of the business. This is a direct contrast to what it’s like working for an enterprise organization, where each person has some kind of job title with a specific job code which dictates what they’re allowed and not allowed to do. For the most part, I was raised inside of a small business. I got to see the struggles as well as the successes of what it’s like to own your own company by proxy through my parents (You could also argue that this is where I got addicted to that level of autonomy). Since then, I’ve gone on to work for just absolutely massive organizations and I’ve gotten to witness firsthand the level of technical expertise expected in the enterprise, and simultaneously the sheer massive amount of administrative waste that these kinds of places can have.
Working for a small businsses and startups have a lot in common, because everything is so lean. By “lean” in this case, I mean you don’t have room for extranneous staffing, software, process, etc. If something needs to be done, you better roll up your sleeves and get to work because at most there’s one or two other people who are as dedicated to the success of your business as you are. When I founded NorthCode Solutions, I had a vision of providing the same level of technical excellence to small businesses as one could expect from a large enterprise. The challenge comes when we try and keep this process lean, since most services provided to small businesses don’t scale well. However, with the recent advances in cloud technologies we’ve seen in recent years (as well as a healthy level of “infrastructure-as-code” development) it’s possible to scale much more mature levels of support to smaller and smaller businesses.
Okay, so now that you’ve heard my rant on startups and why I founded my company, here’s the news we’ve all been waiting for. My company has been officially brought in to the BetaBlox Startup Incubator. I’ve been brought in for a couple of my ideas, which I think is equal parts exhilarating and terrifying. This is great news on one hand because it validates that a team full of smart people think that I have smart ideas which could make us all a whole bunch of money. This is terrifying news on the other hand because now I have to do the leg work and execute on my vision for this company. For the time being, it will still be an off hours gig that I’ll be striving to grow and help thrive. I’m happy that I’m now not alone in this venture, and I think the BetaBlox team are the right folks to align myself with to start creating success.
Can’t get enough of me? Be sure to follow me on Twitter @_brycemcdonald.
Think I could help with your business? Contact me for details via twitter, email, or on the NorthCode Solutions website.