Cyber security is a business that has boomed in the last 10 years. I’ve had meetings with people who have told me stories about the evolution of the business going back to the early 90’s. It’s very interesting to hear these guys talk about how it all evolved.
Cyber security is not a new field, but what is new is the massive demand for cyber products and services. Since Augusta is in it’s early stages when it comes to cyber startups, I decided to make a phone call to some experts in the field and get some advice. I called the guys at Mach37. They are the biggest cyber security accelerator in the USA.
I got in touch with one of the founders of Mach37 who was more than willing to talk and share his experiences with me. Was this because he realize that Augusta will be a major player in the business soon? Maybe. No matter what the reasons for being so motived to talk, I gained some knowledge that will be helpful in the future.
After several hours on the phone, I had a better idea of what needed to be done. A lot basic business concepts apply… you need a motivated team with a product or service that is in demand if you want to turn a profit at some point. This is not new, this is as old as time, but I was advised that 3 man diverse teams had increase the success rate exponentially.
We also have a lot of information security experts that form single member LLC’s and run all over the world working as “Consultants”. These guys are charging insane rates for their services. More power to them, I wish them the best… but this poses a problem.
There is no leverage in a one man team that runs around the world. Only so much work can get done. Lawyers have faced this same problem for years. You are trading time for dollars.
When they do have more than a one man team, they are all exactly the same, the Einstein/Urkel types that could hack pretty much anything, but could not give an elevator pitch if their life depended on it.
The solution is building diverse 3 man teams at the seed stage. Each person on the team has a different responsibility. We don’t need 3 people that are exactly the same, that is the mistake that a lot of these startups make. They are geniuses at cyber, but when it comes to business, they need help.
You need one cyber Einstein, one business guy for the books (licenses, accounting, legal, IP) and then one smooth salesman out front who can translate all of this into english so that the average investor and/or customer can understand the problem that the product/service solves.
I have been a mentor and/or paid business coach to companies for years when it comes to intellectual property, digital marketing, investment and business structure. The information that was relayed to me was not new and quite simple, break up the 3 man Urkel teams and diversify with different skills that compliment each other.
The problem then becomes keeping these different personality types in line with each other. Solid leadership is needed to help keep the teams on track. Some friction is good, to much friction and it all falls apart.
This cyber revolution in Augusta is happening and there is no stopping it. I fully believe that we will see massive transformation in the next 36 months. We are going to continue to see large companies move to town. This is a big plus when they are as giving to the community as companies like Unisys.
Small companies will be started, some will fail, it’s all part of the process. One of the keys is to recycle the individuals that were a part of the failed startup into new startups. They bring with them experience and knowledge from their previous failure. Don’t shun these people, recruit them, and try again.
The small businesses are the ones that need help. I am doing my part by setting up the Invest Augusta Conference. This is part of the investment pipeline that will be needed so money can flow into the city from outside venture firms.
Are you as excited about the future in Augusta as I am? Contact Invest Augusta and let’s get you or your firm involved.