Our Core Values: Introduction

Written by Andrew Kurtz 01/25/18


This series explores our four core values with brief, high-level overviews of the meanings as well as the subtle nuances. Let’s start at the beginning…

Letter from the Founder

Several years ago, I realized that the single biggest risk to the future of Kopis and Vigilix was too many single points of failure and a reliance on individuals.

I was by far the most obvious, “managing” everything and everyone. Not only was the company at risk because of all the areas I controlled (and only I understood), but I was also starting to under-perform as I became stretched too thin.

However, there were many other single points of failure, and we relied too often on great execution by individuals. This needed to change, so we embarked on an effort to build an organization that was not reliant on any single individual, including and especially the founder.

Fast forward to the start of 2018, and we are different companies.

I personally have been slowly handing over responsibility and accountability for tasks I historically controlled. I expect to soon see the remaining operational duties out my direct hands.

The single biggest risk to our future was too many single points of failure.

Over the past few years, our revenue has grown, our leadership team has grown, and our overall team has grown.

For Vigilix, our product usage has increased and the product continues to mature. For Kopis, we have expanded into targeted managed services, Azure development, mobile development and most recently, Microsoft Dynamics.

This growth is important because to be a self-sustaining organization, we need processes and people owning and leading the different aspects of our daily execution.

However, while these new roles are critical to longterm sustainability, they also add overhead cost (costs not directly related to generating revenue), which means our overall revenue must grow to support it. Said more succinctly, it was important we grow into a self-sustaining organization.

I say all this because I know that, while growth is critical, is also brings change and sometimes change can be challenging.

Change isn’t always smooth.

But despite change, our company can stay true to who we are and what got us here. In fact, continually thinking about our core values, using them as a guiding light, is more important than ever before as we face new challenges.

As our team grows, we need to intentionally and regularly remember those values. Recognizing this, our plan is to incorporate reminders of them into as many aspects of our internal communication and processes as possible.

The best starting point is reminding everyone of the four core values:

  • Lead
  • Impact
  • Respect
  • Simplify

There’s deep meaning in these four words. Over the course of this series, I’ll share my thoughts and observations on what they mean from my perspective along with examples of how they are being lived without our company.

I ask three things of you …

First, and most importantly, understand these four deep but simple words and work to incorporate their meaning into your day.

Second, if you see situations where you think someone has exemplified one or more of these core values, let me or the leadership team know. We want to recognize efforts that tightly align with who we are.

Finally, if you have recommendations on places we can add these core values to our communication and processes, please share your ideas.

We have a lot planned for this year. Let’s make it the best year in our history!

Thank you all for everything you do!

Andrew Kurtz
President & CEO


Explore Our Core Values Series

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