Today is bittersweet. 14 years ago today I walked into my first day at a new job. The first day of J2 Software. After months of planning, setbacks, re-planning, negotiation, doubt and confidence the first day in our “office” was here.
3 April 2006 and I proudly walked into the warehouse area of E-Bis armed with 2 laptops, a laser printer and a 3G data card the size of my left hand. Jason still had a month’s notice to complete at his previous employer so it would be a few more weeks before we got to share that desk and 3G card to get our message out there. Jason and I would have to talk on the telephone after hours as the first days flew by. Those were great times, difficult times, exciting times. We were freezing in winter and melting in summer. Driving in panic to Vereeniging for damage control and celebrating some amazing wins.
We had customers who bought from us so that they could stop people going to Facebook or playing Farmville and watching YouTube at work. This was a time when the cost of bandwidth meant that it should be saved at all costs. The world has changed so much.
Now 14 years later, I proudly walked into my home office as the world is such a different place and our entire team is spread across the country safely holed up in their houses. The excitement to “go to work” remains the same and the passion to build a proudly South African security focused technology business burns stronger than ever.
Days like today give me reason to reflect and I have to say that even with all the setbacks, economic crises and challenges along the way, I am so proud of what J2 has achieved in 14 short years. We have endured several global downturns and now we are living through a pandemic, but I am sure of one thing – we will not only survive this, we will thrive through it. The human tragedy unfolding around us has caused me to revaluate many aspects about the business and the relationships we have with our team members, suppliers and customers. J2 is focused on being part of a massive bounce back and explosion of South African business. The next 12 months will be good, we will make sure of it.
I remember every small victory and every single difficult decision. The stresses around cash flow and gut-wrenching difficulties through chemotherapy and radiation. All of this made us champions of resilience.
Read more: 14 Years – what a trip?