The Story Behind Our Growth, Part I
CEO Brian Seidel explains what is driving the company growth in a two-part series. This post talks about our recent success, and the upcoming part two discusses why we feel Website Pipeline is well-positioned for continued growth.
It starts with focus
Our revenue growth the last several years is the result of eight straight years of laser-focus on one niche market. By aligning all of our sales, marketing, product development, and fulfillment process efforts on one thing (ERP-integrated ecommerce), we have dramatically increased the value that our front office ecommerce software brings to B2B wholesalers and manufacturers. That is why last year’s growth was strong: because we spent our first seven years grinding it out and experimenting, essentially figuring out what our true purpose was. Once we identified that integrating ERP systems with ecommerce systems was our purpose, we've spent the next eight years striving to become world-class at it.
I believe this focus is what has established Website Pipeline as the market leader in the mid-market ERP/ecommerce space. We have more than 60 people on staff all focused on winning that market, which makes it easier for businesses to choose our solutions when evaluating their options. We work very hard to find employees that are willing to outwork the competition, and are capable of outsmarting them. This combination of focus and talent is driving the growth of the company.
Key leadership values
Continuing growth requires strong leadership, because one or two strong leaders can only grow a company so far. We're building a team of leaders to persist our rapid expansion. I constantly fall short, but I strive everyday to embody these leadership values:
- Cast a Clear Vision – make sure it is clear to everyone why we are in business and what we are working on to progress as a company.
- Find the Win-Win – It’s cliche, but it’s the only way to build a sustainable business that people want to be part of. We want our employees, customers, and vendors to win when they work with us. We expect to win too.
- Work Hard & Play Hard – My two co-founders and I are all intensely passionate and actively involved in the day-to-day business. All three of us have very strong work ethics, and we all like to have fun. This forms the bedrock of Website Pipeline culture. We want our team members to have a life away from work – each of us do, and we’re not giving it up. We also want them to have fun while they are at work, and we expect everyone – especially our leadership team - to work hard and produce results.
- Be Fair, Logical, and Seek First to Understand – I find that most people are fair and logical to work with when you are fair and logical with them. This is particularly true when you start by trying to understand their point of view. I have been in many circumstances where I was glad that I asked questions and listened first, because I found that my initial vantage point was way off. Unfortunately, I have been in just as many circumstances where I did not seek understanding first, and I ended up regretting it and eating crow.
- Be a Student – We live in the era of “knowledge work”. If you aren’t constantly and deliberately doing things to learn (reading books, listening to podcasts, watching videos, associating with people smarter than you, etc.), you are falling behind, and you are missing a great opportunity for personal growth and gratification. Companies can build programs and activities to foster this attitude, but ultimately it is a mindset that can only be decided on by you. It doesn’t matter how old you are - be a student. My number one source of outside information is listening to audio books and podcasts while driving. I easily get 30 minutes to 1.5 hours of new content every day in my car. My favorite podcast is Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders by Stanford University. I find it absolutely fascinating.
Part II of this topic will focus on the future of ERP systems and ecommerce. Subscribe to our blog for instant email notifications of new posts!