I started my company 18 years ago. Two employees, a line of credit, a second mortgage. I had zero kids when I started, today I have three.
Eighteen years later the company has almost 200 employees, and the hard work our team has put in has paid off. We have grown every year and have been recognized by major publications for our company culture. However, our work is not done.
It still feels like we haven't achieved what we have the potential to achieve. We can still double, triple, quadruple our revenue, increase our margins and expand our service offerings. I believe we can. We have the vision to accomplish this.
Over the summer, I received the news that for the 10th consecutive year, we made the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing privately held companies. It's taken me a while to be able to put into words how I feel about making the list.
My desire to grow that I mentioned earlier, many times overshadows the accomplishments of the growth and consistency we have achieved.
I finally realize, I can have both. Enjoy the short term successes and still have the hunger and belief that we aren't a fraction of the way to where we can get.
To be perfectly candid, there was a part of me the first 5-6 years of making the Inc. list that felt a little inferior to those who made the top 500. We were growing by double digits almost every year. We grew through the recession. But we couldn't get close to the 500. Then I realized, I needed to be happy for what we had accomplished.
I took my team to last year's Inc. 500/5000 gala, and I saw a group of thousands of professionals working for growing companies who were so pumped to be there. And, it hit me.
Take a moment and appreciate and enjoy what you've accomplished. It doesn't mean you don't want to grow faster or be better, but that you appreciate and value what you've accomplished along the way.
Whether it's the Inc. 5000 or the local paper in your city that ranks corporate growth, strive for the moon but be sure to enjoy every star you pass by on the ride there!