As most people that know me now are probably aware, integrateIT was recently informed that we will be featured on the 2013 Best Company to Work for List for 2013 when it is released by the Washington Business Journal next month (yes I am proud of this so forgive me). To many, this is just some stupid marketing gimmick. To me though, this is aknowledgement that a decades worth of work has been noticed. All of the reasons why integrateIT will show up on this list have been years in the making. They are the core principles of a company that was established in 2004 as just a pipe dream. It represents sticking to these ideals even after we have been told by several people that it wouldn’t work or that these things we cared about just weren’t that important to others. I am proud of our company not for this award but because of what this award symbolizes. It symbolizes that you can come up with an idea and if you stick to it you can make it work. Obviously you can’t do it alone and that’s what else this award symbolizes to me. That after nearly a decade in business we have it figured out. We have the right people in the right jobs and we are doing things the right way and this award also symbolizes to me that we need to continue exactly that…doing it our way.
Last Thursday I received the call that we had been awarded the contract we have long been awaiting a response on. I actually can only recall the first few seconds of the phone call because once I got the word that we won, I was done. My mind raced with so many emotions….pride, excitement, amazement, nervousness, and anxiety because now the hard work begins. If we can’t produce results then we won’t survive to see the end of this 5 year contract we have just been awarded.
When I started integrateIT in 2004, people used to always ask me, what my goals were for the company. My goal has NEVER been to sell the company and cash in. My goal has always been to grow a company that people want to work for and one day retire working for this company. Our number one goal has been to win a prime contract. The reason this is big in our industry is for a few reasons. For starters it provides a little more stability for a company and also more flexibility in your ability to hire the people you want without needing to get approval from another company. The other reason winning a prime contract is important is because it shows other people you know what you are doing and gives you the confidence that you can do it again.
3 years ago we attempted a prime contract bid and we were slapped in the face by reality. At that time the reality was we were not ready or qualified to be a prime contractor. The government had no problem telling us this in our debrief in what was a painful hour long meeting where we were bluntly told all the things we did wrong or could have done better in our proposal. It was demoralizing and at that time I wasn’t sure if we would ever attain this goal. Fast forward to last week and you can see why we were so overjoyed by this award. We had to make a tough decision to go forward with all of this work to submit this proposal after the last experience of being shot down big time. We did it. We really have come a long way and it feels great. So many people deserves thanks for helping us get o this point…..a great co owner, our families for supporting us, mentors who have helped give us guidance along the way, and of course our employees that provide us with an incredible story to tell to our potential clients of previous successes we have obtained.
I think what my co owner Dave wrote last Thursday sums up how I feel about this award. “I think we made it”!
Geoff is the CEO of integrateIT (http://www.integrateit.net). integrateIT strives to provide innovative solutions to organizations within the public and private sectors in the Washington, DC metro area and beyond. We aim to supply clients with qualified, energetic resources that foster both a winning team attitude and a wealth of technical and management expertise. integrateIT strives to add value to clients by successfully completing projects within budget, scope, and schedule requirements.