Mandatory Questions –
• Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.
We are a locally owned company serving the Kansas City and national markets for over 15 years. We can handle all your IT strategy, security, operations, and custom software development needs.
Digital Maelstrom guides clients ranging from small businesses to large corporations with a variety of tech-related matters. Our mission is to empower your organization in achieving its goals where technology makes sense.
Our name represents the villain in the story of the hero who is buffeted on all sides by digital and technological chaos. Our team is the trusted sage amidst this chaos who will help guide the hero back to their path and equip them with the tools to conquer the villain and accomplish their business goals.
• Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).
Founded Digital Maelstrom in 2006. I led a small team to operate the business to achieve the 25 under 25 awards and had our company selected in the top 100 small businesses of Greater Kansas City in 2019.
• I serve as the principal consultant over security and strategy
• I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Kansas.
• I obtained the industry certifications such as CISSP, CSLP, OSCP
• I am an adjunct instructor for a cybersecurity Bootcamp through the University of Kansas – Edwards Campus
• What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?
I have been working as a senior engineer almost before I finished college and I realized I could reach a broader group of clientele if I focused on consulting.
• What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
1. Be clear in your value proposition to your customers
2. Ask and understand what customers they feel they need
3. Be Flexible
• What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
1. Talk to customers well
2. Need to be able to organize and orient others to goals
• How many hours do you work a day on average?
• To what do you most attribute your success?
• How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Been given an opportunity to speak with a new client through a referral because of the quality of our work from current clients.
The core manner we succeed is to speak honestly and genuinely about what we can do for a prospect and be willing to give free advice
Referral – because our business offerings require a high degree of trust
• Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
Digital Maelstrom was bootstrapped
• What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
Having a welfromed long term goal and reevaluating it regularly.
• Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
Jeff sees himself focusing on his passion with security leadership and delegated more the day to day to other leadership
He would like to have Digital Maelstrom grown to 10-20 employees with sustainable revenue for that size in 5 years.
• Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
CEO Dan Price
Recommended Questions –
• How important have good employees been to your success?
1. No leader has all the answers and honest feedback in essential
2. You can’t do everything – Delegation is important
3. You own motivation for success can be more impactful when you can feel the success of others
• How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
If the idea is grounded with some core value/principle then never
if the idea is outside of that – then it relies on feedback from peers
Sometime just sitting with the idea to see if it keeps coming back up
Sometimes it is a chance as it keeps coming back then Stay with it longer
• What motivates you?
Family, self image, and self worth
• What are your ideals?
Promoting and applying diversity
Build a company that anyone feels proud to work for
Everyone has their needs cared for
• How do you generate new ideas?
Lots and lots of reading
• How do you build a successful customer base?
Excellence in every project we work on creates new work
Transparency and Honesty
• What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Freedom to defined my way
• What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
When our employees can be themselves without worry or stress and we are there to support them.
• What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
For the non entrepreneur it is about settling in and not worrying about what happens after the day is done.
Entrepreneurs think about and worry about the business at all times.
• What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?
A place where any ideas matter, where we work together to solve problems, and we all have a stake in the outcome.
Established through demonstration by management. Be willing to ask employees for their input and realistically follow through with changes and be transparent about what is realistic.
Because this is a kind of company I would want to work for
• In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur. Busy
Optional Questions –
• If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
Establish a better pattern for delegation earlier and focus on my talents and cover for my weaknesses.
• How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?
At times it is stressful and it has afforded me opportunities to do things with them that I couldn’t if I was not an entrepreneur.
• What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
Day that I have to let 1 or more people go because of financial reasons.
I try to stay mindful and try not to let panic or fear dominate my decision making.
Built in safeguards where it protects from this scenario
• How did you decide on the location for your business?
Creating an opportunity for the company to be collaborative. (Be Flexible)
• Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?
Yes, all entrepreneurs must establish a good sense of customer need/want and build the processes/means to achieve that. Beyond that it is a little bit of luck and a lot of perseverance.
• If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why? Alan Turing – Just to observe the genius. to satiate the intense curiosity. What drove him?
• Who has been your greatest inspiration?
• What book has inspired you the most? (OR what is your favorite book?) Getting Things Done and Scaling Up
• What are some of the biggest mistakes you’ve made?
Not being more motivated to work on the business earlier – stayed focussed working in the business
Not bring employees into the company to delegate
• How can you prevent mistakes or do damage control?
Be honestly aware of weakness and actively look for ways to cover for them.
• What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
Play video games, Play with the family, Read constantly and mess with technology
• What makes you happy?
Feeling sufficiently challenged and still be able to end the week with a job well done, Spend quality time with my family, All of our needs are met
• If you were conducting this interview, what question would you ask?
Would you do it all again?
For More Information Visit us at https://www.digitalmaelstrom.net