Ticketmaster, Apple, Monster discussed on The How-to Entrepreneur
Have your coffee at your convenience Java Press Jennifer Don Ladies and gentlemen thank you for coming on the show today how you doing. I'm dealing gory and thank you so much for having the it's an honor to be here. Now it's our pleasure. It's our pleasure. Thank you Jennifer so you from starting your own company to really transform and a couple of other companies corp style from within to being a public speaker and even starting another entrepreneurial venture the best planner ever company at some point. A lot of people might not assume this out the gate but the first company founded was that of a software company correct. Yeah was that was my actually my very very first like of business was I was eight and I started apple. Stand and my grandmother's yard because I was like a lemonade. Stand is old school. I'm not doing that and I just saw the apple tree and my grandfather was a chiropractor and he had his office attached to his house and I was like wait a second. I could make money on all these patients coming in all these apples that are going to waste. And so I would say that when I was eight was my first dip into entrepreneurialism But my first official Real Company. Yeah was twenty three and I did. Software does cool the software company of yours. It was back in the mid nineties when you opened it. Did you have a tech savvy background of some sort or an academic school no? I didn't go to a school. Tech Savvy just I don't know it just kind of I always just. It was Kinda like natural ability. I always really liked it and even in high school. I had jobs where I was. You know Gosh back. Then we were doing like word processing in Dos using word perfect and but that was my little high school job because I love being on the computer and I love being able to put stuff into it and create something with it and so I also loved helping people and just kind of naturally levitated towards software which you know with software system. We can automate things. We can make our jobs easier make our lives easier and so that just felt. It just felt really really good demand. As as I worked my way up I worked for the governor Florida I worked for. Ibm Did those things before. I started my company but I was always in tech positions. I was never programmer. That was more of the end user designing it using it from that perspective Thinking back then the Internet did really exist. Yeah work within wasn't really a demand for tech industry back then or yeah. Well it's interesting because my software was. We did point of sale software for the amusement industry. So you think of Water Parks Museums Ski Resorts and places. Like that where you go and you buy a ticket and previously those places. Many of 'em we moved them of cash registers because The saying in the industry was. Is that if you want your employees to steal us a cash register because it's the easiest way and so really back then. That's a lot of what we were doing was replacing cash registers with a computerized point of sale system. And it's funny. Our company was actually the very first company to use a touchscreen monitor a windows platform all our competitors. Wrong like Dawson keyboards. And so we were. We were the first to bring a touchscreen into that point of sale world. Now everybody uses it. But so yeah. There was definitely a need for the technology to streamline get those lines like moving faster and keep the employees from robbing. Everybody blind have some controls on the front end of these businesses. Were all their money comes into. Also would you say your business was the precursor to companies such as event ticketmaster. Yes absolutely Ticketmaster I recall correctly is a long time ago. You guys Was still was definitely around. So some of those initial companies. Yeah they were still there but they were like our competitor. Now we did more general. Admission ticketing ticketmaster often does reserve seedings when the industry was at time it was really two separate companies. Like they didn't really cross over. You had your reserved seat ticketing and you had your general admission ticketing and as we went along we actually ended up adding reserved seating to our system. Just because that's what the industry demanded yes integrated. You guys really pioneered innovative all of that. That's that's awesome. That's good to hear you don't hear about too. Many people doing things with tech back in the mid nineties at really still still holds. Its own weight today Suit it's so true you know I remember I my partner. It's all. I was insane because I wanted to have a website like back then was like. What do we need that for? I remember I hired a company who built us a website and I spent fifteen thousand dollars and at the time that was just unheard of to spend that much money on on something that like. What do we even need that for? Two thousand dollars for website back in what was the timeframe ninety five. This was in the nineties. Yeah third pitcher. That it was a lot it was a lot didn't have back to really on the forefront of I've ever really like I mean when you want to stay a step ahead of your competitors especially in the tech industry it costs money and you might be familiar with Gary v He had internet company at Website Back into and people thought he was crazy and people talk a whole bunch of negativity negativity behind his back and mean. Look where he's at now where you're at now you. You guys definitely have the right idea. Yeah yeah we have a friend. Andrew Couch. The guy also had an idea that wound up pioneering the airspace as we know it today but he wasn't the most tech savvy guy either a long story short. He hired the right team and they were able to achieve his vision. Did you so you didn't do all of this on your own as you mentioned you weren't doing the programming? How did you outsource for your original team back? Then yeah so we would place you know Gosh you'RE GONNA laugh. We place ads in the newspaper. Because what's next time? Yeah exactly because that's kind of what you did. We would go to like the local Job Placement with whatever the state was you know the local job placement services possible. I think later on. We started using like Monster was really big back then and We started using monster dot com to find people. But also just you know word of mouth and asking around. Who Do you know to to really find the people on the team that we needed if you were to go about that nowadays? It'd probably be a little different. I don't know how many people still use monster taking out newspaper ads but If you had to go about it again given what you know now in the position that you're in with your business how do you go about outsourcing firm employees to use ziprecruiter or lengthen? Those are pretty common outlets. Are there some that were? We may not be aware of. Yeah you know what so I do have team? They're all contractors. I don't have employees on. That was just a choice. I made in this business this time around. I've had many many employees in the past but With my current business it really enables me to just use contractors and I have found Gosh so many of my contractors on a site called higher my mom. I don't know if you've heard of that one or not. That's her higher. My Mom's so leslie pile is the lovely woman who started it because she wanted to help stay at home. Moms find work and what you end up. Finding are a lot of really highly qualified of from home moms. Who are just looking for work so that they can stay at home often with their children and I have found almost all my team. They're like my secret secret where I go to find people My graphic artist might be as My writer Lake like my most of my team has come from higher. My mom I pull it the the website and it's like the Seattle Times parenting entrepreneur woman say even Fox business but I never heard of it. That isn't that funny. It's it's big mass medias to in I never DISA- first time I'm hearing about it. Yeah no I love it. It's like my little secret weapon and so really and truly if I need to source a position I usually go there first and I will usually get twenty or thirty resumes. I filled sales positions through there. I'll get twenty thirty resumes. And then I I usually end up stopping the ad before the original end date because gone so many resumes. I'm like no no no I can't take anymore. Cool going back to what you were referring to when you were team building it was at. Quantico was the name of your first company right yes okay back at quantocks you mentioned and you told us that you outsource through the newspaper and Word of mouth for these people that you are trying to build a team with and you did have experience in the tech field but you did have to wear a lot of hats. What type of hats from an entrepreneurial standpoint do you need to wear? Because you don't you don't. You can't wear every hat but there are some staple hats that you need to know how to take on and off. Which ones were those that you used regularly to grow Your Business? Yeah great questions so quantocks. I pretty much were every half there was except coating I was not. I was not a coder now. I could get into the database and I had I taught myself learned how to get in the database and I could do like manual or maintenance type things I could get in and I could code like basic reporting like basic basic but the real code. The developers handled that. That was the only hat I didn't wear so I was the salesperson. I was the one marketing the business I was at trade shows I was going. Oh my God back then you guys to do a demo of a software system back then you had to take all the equipment with you. There was no zoom. There was no skype none of this. And so I had these giant padded cases and I would put a computer model a whole computer like a computer from Dell and of a touchscreen monitor and I'd had to take a ticket printer a receipt printer in the keyboards all of this crash of and I would have it in these big padded cases and I would fly around the country and have to set all this stuff up in conference rooms and little offices. And that's how I gave a software demo was actually taking all this equipment with me showing the client how it worked then. When I sold software I was the person that went back out and installed it. I taught I mean installed. It plugged in all the computers. Help the network. I run the cabling all of that. Then I was the person who trained them on how to use it then. I was the person that they called for customer service when they had a problem. The fifty thousand dollars. Yeah of course no. Actually that's crazy software systems back then so on the low end for like a one. Point of sale system was fifteen to twenty thousand dollars. I mean they were expensive and on the other end. I think the largest system ever did was a quarter of a million because this the reason why you wanted to the what's it called the software company industry. Yeah I mean it's beginning. There was money absolutely but there's not as much money as it sounds like the time you have all that overhead with the hardware then you have to service the software in the beginning years when you don't have a lot of clients. There's not money in that. It's only after you sort of get over that hump or you have enough clients who are on annual maintenance contract agreements. That's when it started being more profitable but in the beginning. Not so much it. You really had to get enough clients Software Service annual agreements. That's really where it started to be more profitable. So money's money's accused motivated action for for any entrepreneur. 'cause I mean there's no identify yourself worth other than how you spend your time? And what is where two U? Two hundred fifty thousand dollars. You know. That's no small feat especially back. Then I mean the multiplier. I'd would even after the overhead. You probably solve a lot of me and Josh's problems so that's that's that's the window that the Amanda Something. You always want to have open. Did you capitalize on that venture as well because the space may not have been inhabited quite yet like most places are now most tech saturated areas are like you know everyone's gotta APP now that they're trying to do that? Someone's already diner. The ten other people have already done. I know we mentioned ticketmaster earlier. But was there anyone doing specifically what it is you guys were doing? You guys? Were just able to capitalize on the differently. Yeah you know. It's interesting because at that time. The other companies our competitors weren't doing what we were doing because we had an advantage because we were a newer company so we started off writing our code on the windows platform which. I know it. Sounds like what back then systems were written in dos in Lennox and they were not a graphical user interface. They were not on windows. And so when we hit the scene we were on this graphical interface and then we we we added a touchscreen to that which at the time was really like holy crap we would go to these trade shows. We would be the only company doing this and so at that time. I didn't feel like we had to chase everybody because we were innovating. We were doing things differently. Then what happened is that the competition caught up with us that was always frustrating to be like. Dang it you know we were the only ones doing it and now we're not every other touches new. Yeah right.