I run a Tech Company? Huh?

So I was sitting at a meeting a couple of weeks back and someone asked me about my insight running a tech business. For a second I looked across the table at someone else who was at the meeting, but soon realized that the individual was talking to me. I asked him, “me? Run a tech company….? No I just do business plans and and we just happen to use technology tools to automate the business planning process”.

I was met by a “well what are you if you are not a tech company”? This question made me sit back and think about what actually defines tech start-ups. Being labelled a “tech company” does not really change anything—we are still working through the tech bugs with our developers–and I am realizing that good developers need far longer to work through problems, than I think they ought to. In fact, one of the best Developers I have met, Tony Curcio, at Si TechGroup, often tells me “stop trying to play developer”. It is a lesson that I am slowly learning–I am a type A by nature–although having kids has significantly worn down these A type tendencies.

I have had the opportunity to get to know some amazing developers, (Tony and his crew) who are intuitive and anal about the work they do. Would I go through this process again? Yes. Would I do it differently? Yes, Definitely.

So, as I gathered my thoughts, sat back and answered “I guess I am a tech company”, I started to reflect on this stereotype of “running” a tech company and what it means. When I think tech company, I imagine an early 20 something working out of his parents basement (definitely a ‘he”), up at all hours of the day coding programs/apps/web programs, eating ramen, and living in the same change of clothes as he hacks government files in his spare time for fun.

The Reality

While this image is far removed (remember I was a child of the 80′s and any good hacker I knew spent at least a bit of time trying to crack government files), I started to consider how I fit this stereotype  First and foremost, I am a woman. Second I am married, in my mid-thirties with two young kids. I do not program–please there are times I still have to have my husband show me where the C drive is on the computer! I own my own house, hate working in the basement and am a morning person. I do not mind ramen once a year or so, but I appreciate my showers and changing clothes at least once a day. I prefer order to “hacking government files” and my spare time, what precious little I have, I sit on 3 not for profit boards, and act as Chair of another. So, as far as stereotypes go, I am not sure what insight I can give into running a tech company, all I know is that I am still learning myself and will be glad to share my story with you along my journey.

What do You Mean I Run a Tech Company?

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