Celebrating Seven Years at HANDD
Milestones present an opportunity for us to reflect upon experience and the lessons of the past as well as to plan for many more years of success & growth ahead. But putting the business part aside it’s also a time for us to reflect on our own individual journeys, the journeys of others and the inner workings of a business that the outside world doesn’t see.
Last Monday I celebrated 7 years at HANDD which made me think quite a lot about the changes I have seen and how the company has advanced over the years.
When I started at HANDD 7 years ago we were less than half the number of head count we are today and occupied only half of the building at our current HQ. I’ve always said that one of the most enjoyable things about working at HANDD has been the people I have met and the stage that HANDD has provided for us all to perform.
We have a unique vision (certainly unique in my career) of developing individuals to become more than just the role. There are jobs that need to be done, for sure, but there is also encouragement, driven passionately by the owners, for individuals to bring their own creativity to the role and shape their own destiny that in turn progresses the business.
When I first started at HANDD, as a Technical Consultant, fulfilling the role of supporting our impressive client list with their technical issues, Ian Davin, CEO & Co-Founder, said to me “The only limits you have in life are the ones you place on yourself.” A phrase that has resonated with me ever since as I have been on a journey at HANDD where I have moved from Technical Support to establish the Pre-Sales team and then on to become HANDD’s first Chief Technology Officer.
But to reflect simply on my own journey is to ignore the individual journey of colleagues and friends around me and the great work HANDD (under Ian and Anthony’s guidance) has done in developing them.
My colleague Laura Pavitt, for example, joined HANDD more than 5 years ago as an Internal Sales Assistant, she has since gone on to become one of the all-time leading Account Managers in the history of HANDD. Kelfa Carew, in Technical support joined HANDD to replace me as a Technical Consultant. After a very impressive start and receiving many great plaudits from customers Kelfa now manages the Technical Support Team which has grown tenfold in his time. Sunita Gill who now heads up the Marketing Team joined as a Marketing Assistant just a few years ago.
It’s not just about the development of staff who have been here for years though, its also about complimenting what we have with talented and hungry individuals who are willing to learn. Aaron Fox, a highly skilled Data Security Advisor joined the sales team last year and has already closed the largest global deal ever for one of our longest standing partners. Rebecca “Becky” Bow, Noemi Lamanna and Jan Ogorzalek also make up part of a strongly talented Sales Team who have built up a great client list and have become well established amongst existing customers and partners. Samantha “Just Sammy” Roberts, took over from Laura in Internal Sales introducing new improved processes to streamline operations and make the team more efficient. All kudos to her as it’s been a challenge which she has more than risen to. The Pre-Sales team that I helped set up is now in safe hands under Dave Matthews stewardship. I also think of the Technical Support team too where there has been a huge investment in experienced technical resources such as Raymond Balinda as well as the development of graduates to continue delivering HANDD’s impeccable support service for the future.
These are just a few examples (apologies to other wonderful colleagues I didn’t mention this time) but it clearly demonstrates that HANDD has a proud tradition of developing and nurturing talented individuals to improve themselves and as a result improve the business. Without the amazing people here at HANDD we wouldn’t be enjoying the success we do today. HANDD has created a fantastic team and that for me over my 7 years has been the biggest pull, wanting to be part of other peoples journeys as much as creating my own.
Vital to becoming a fully initiated HANDD employee, we are also a friendly, sociable team. I have met some lifelong friends at HANDD, including Laura who I am set to be best man for at her wedding later this year (badah). I also spent most of my spare time in Autumn 2015 travelling in and out of Wales (thanks for driving Dave) for the Rugby World Cup to watch Ireland with the Sales Director, Chris Farrelly as well as taking in a trip to see Euro 2016 in Lille (Ireland v Italy 1-0 to the boys in green!).
When I started 7 years ago, HANDD were also proud specialists in Managed File Transfer. Now as well as being the leading Global providers of Managed File Transfer solutions we have expanded our offering and established ourselves as leaders in many other areas of Data Security, reflecting heavily on the skills that have come into the business. We now also have an office in Malaysia to help support our huge global client base. By complimenting our existing skills with skills from our new recruits, HANDD continues to provide an unrivalled level of expertise throughout the company that personally makes me extremely “chuffed”.
But, I’ve got to tell you, by far the most exciting thing (in my opinon) that is happening at HANDD in recent years is the office move to a new premises in central Reading scheduled for later this year. This has absolutely nothing to do with the fact it’s just a short walk from where I live (get in!) To me it is a huge statement from the business, it also reflects massively on where we have come from and the hard work it took by everyone to get us there. It really is something to look upon with a warm feeling that it has all been worth it.
There is a huge buzz about the office at the moment as the progress of the business and the people who work here take another mammoth step forward. Everyone wants to be part of the journey, HANDD really are firing on all cylinders and moving full steam ahead in the right direction. It will be an exciting journey full of new adventures, experiences and lessons but one that wouldn’t be possible without the talented individuals who have helped shape this business so far. I am also certain there will continue to be many equally talented individuals joining us in the future to be a part of that success story as we continue to grow.
I’d be lying if I said it’s been without a few minor bumps, I think most in Data Security would agree that you kiss a few frogs. However, it is your ability to adapt, innovate and keep moving that helps makes your business a success in this industry.
As I said to Ian earlier this year, I’ve really enjoyed my time working at HANDD so far but now as I look back on my time here I also feel extremely proud.
Thanks for all the kind personal messages on this special anniversary! It’s been an incredible journey and I hope the next 7 years are as rewarding as the last 7.
Danny Maher – HANDD, CTO