building companies and changing lives

Change Never Felt So Good
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I asked my team to reflect on 2014 and what was the biggest lesson learned this year professionally & about themselves?

It was not even 11am and I had responses from the entire team except one and his I am sure, will be incredibly thoughtful.  This is truly the most special group we have had at Protis in 19 years.  So now I felt I owed answers to the same question(s).

This year, the events of this country and world have opened my eyes even more so in spite I have lived 53 years.  So rather than go into details of some of those dark events, I will focus on how those events have made me better appreciate the things that are happening that are awesome.

Be Self Aware:

I have been guilty a few times saying and thinking, “man, if a few thousand dollars is a make a break or break moment for our company, then we are in trouble”. The statement is innocent but is so obnoxious.  At Protis Global, we take great pride in building companies and changing lives – The right Way, yet I have still made the statement above.  – But when I say , “man, if a few thousand dollars is a make a break or break moment for our company, then we are in trouble”, I am more crystallized that for many people, $1 makes a HUGE difference and can make and break that day they are living. Sometimes, it is just a hot chocolate from a café’ to help stay warm or a box of chicken from the market to eat that day.  Or the person that asks for a few coins or a $1 – I am not so discriminate on whether to give to this person or not that person because judging one may get food and the other may get booze.  Who cares?  Why try to judge?  For that moment in time, that person is allowed a choice at that precise time…what they do is up to them.  I have always given to people and charities- but working downtown in both Miami and Indy, my heart goes out to them – all of them. Some it is by choice and they bring our system down sure, but others and the others are many, it has been a bad break, a bad choice not recovered from etc. Charities are great but to have an impact right then and there is crucial.  So this year, my exposure and senses have been heightened and I am aware $1 means the world to many.

The paragraph above makes me so much appreciate the team assembled at Protis Global.  We are already 18 people in Miami.  All 18 people are some of the best we have assembled and bring an edge and intensity everyday to the office and pride to get things done right every day unlike any collective group we have ever had – and they are also incredible human beings as well. 

So for me, I have prided myself to on self awareness and yet, I have learned I still have a ways to go. 

Surround yourself with great people first:

This is year has provided an amazing year of self invoked challenges.  Yet, through incredible team members our dream is coming to focus of building something special.  A great organization is about:

  • The Right Talent on the team
  • Having a Product in Demand
  • Delivering a Value Proposition to your market better than the competition
  • Having Operational excellence

We have started to realize this through building our team with the right talent.  So we have come to the conclusion that experience and skills are not what we hire against but rather we hire TALENT and FIT.  That is the DNA and how people are wired.  We can teach skills and offer experiences but we cannot teach talent or values.

This is how we have overcome these challenges this year:

  • Made decision to move operations and HQ from Indy to Miami.
  • Let a couple people go – lost a couple along the way and defining the who/why of Protis
  • Had to transition OPS leader who is a dear friend and he was incredible in welcoming Richard and helping him assimilate into Protis Global. 
  • Moved BOTH offices: Indy office to downtown and Miami office to Wynwood Arts District.
    • Including moving much of Indy equipment etc to Miami
  • Sold our place in Miami – bought another and still waiting to move in while living out of a suitcase the last 9 months while my wife and I are living in different cities.  
  • We went from on-site voice and data to the cloud, a lot moving parts to this
  • Protis Global established deep relationship with Univ. of Miami at their MBA, Undergrad and Student/Athlete career development tracks.  We were also invited to participate in the U of M CEO program which includes sitting on panels and networking with other company leaders and mentoring U of M students along the way.
  • We built and delivered our 24 month Strategic Objective (SO) and are already moving it down the road.

 All of this and yet, we managed to break a couple records along the way in 2014 and already in 2015 we are trending toward a new hieghts!

I have learned from my team about what drives them and the above was done due only to them with our vets and rookies making big contributions. 

I also am reminded year after year that I have two incredible business partners that care and are remarkable people.

Q1 2015 was a great start and 2015 promises to be a little more stable relative to office location and personal residence but 2014 has proven we have the horsepower and talent to do big things.  Stay tuned as we progress into the next 12-24 months as exciting things are ahead.

Most of all I am hopeful for a more peaceful 2015 and thankful for the people I am around on a daily basis that they exude with authenticity and lead by example what it means to build companies and change lives, the right way!

“sometimes…the underdog rises and the mighty fall”  #PGRise