I took a seven year hiatus from the tech industry to start and run a manufacturing company of my own idea. At the time I took a break, we had all been “dot-bombed” enough that there were few options left in NYC except go corporate.
For those of you who have never been a cubicle jockey or something in the guise of upper-middle management, it really is a sociological experiment on human nature. One thing I learned about myself is that I enjoy building companies and being part of team where you have to be a bit of a jill-of-all-trades to get things accomplished. As an outlier who never really cared about CYA or corporate politics I was like a farmer trying to grow tomatoes on 6th Avenue in NYC.
I banked a few years of “corporate spank” time (as my good friend Marna refers to it), knowing it was a means to an end and checked out. Obviously an opportunity to remerge into the industry came up and wow how the scenery has changed in the last 7 years.
To give you an idea of where the world was from the corporate budget side, in any variation my 1000’s task lines all included oracle or sybase administration/development and my budget spreadsheets had earmarked designations for license fees, hardware purchases/upgrades and NOC hosting.
Salesforce was barely a glimmer on the radar and the idea of a “cloud” sounded so insecure, why would you trust your data somewhere you couldn’t physically get to it? What if it suddenly went away?
MySQL was something quick and dirty you used in prototyping for your application, recognizing the final production code would be on top of one of the big licensable names.
How these shifts are occurring and how they play into growing the current company I’m involved in I don’t doubt will make for some interesting insights.
Now where did I stash my tomato seeds?