Geeks With Blogs
Chaz Blogs It's all about the eXperience!

Well I guess I should be satisfied that I sustained a company for 10 years.  But it is a bit anti-climactic.  I've screwed up a lot, learned a lot and accomplished a lot since 1998.  I like to think of it as a long MBA program based in real world experience.  I wouldn't trade anything for the experiences I have gained over the past 10 years. 

Nothing is more "real world"  than being your own boss and running your own company.  Nothing is more real world than not getting paid by a client for more than 90 days.  Nothing is more real than being on the bench for several months watching your annual profits disappear.  And yet nothing is more satisfying than knowing I did it for 10 years and did a damn good job at it.

I've seen a lot of crazy stuff.  Crazy stuff other contractors do, crazy stuff clients do, crazy stuff client's employees do and crazy stuff partners do.  I've been everything from developer to CTO.  I've been a contract developer, business partner, CTO, Chief Architect, Sr. Developer, Project Manager, Advisor to a State Health Dept. and a member of a PMO.

I managed to survive more than 6 CTOs at one client and helped two clients when they sold their companies to other companies.  I was once offered 0.5 percent, that's right one half of one percent of a start up as compensation for architecting their entire solution.  Which by the way the company could not exist without as it enabled their entire offering.  I even ran an off-shore operation for a while.

I was offered a job at just about every substantial client that I consulted for.  I was laughed at of course when I told them how much it would cost to hire me.  But that was okay because they just kept me on contract for a long time at my billing rate.

One side benefit I never expected nor planned for came around 2004.  It was an introduction to the "community".  I came across and subsequently hired a big personality in the .Net Community.  We were friends instantly and I was immediately drawn into the community.  I have met amazing people since that time from the typical .Net companies and some not so typical companies.  I was given great opportunities to present to the community (which has probably fullfilled me more than those that attended my sessions.)  While not as active as I once was I will always hold the .Net community in the highest regard and among some of the fondest memories over the past 10 years.

So why the long rant?  Well because in March I decided to take a full time employment position and I actually enjoy it very much.  And so to clean things up I have decided to close my shop.  So in August 2008 I will close my company exactly 10 years after starting it.  A company that has brought me joy and tears, excitement and fear.  If you have ever run your own company, you'll get why this is such a big deal.  If you haven't you should try it some time.  It will certainly give you a different perspective on full time employement.

Maybe I'll be back on the independant side some day.  But for now I've hung my hat at a GREAT company with huge opportunities.  So while I focus on my new career this blog will probably fall silent.



Posted on Saturday, July 5, 2008 9:43 PM .Net , Microsoft , Management , Blogging | Back to top

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