Since Ryan asked me if I would take on the CEO role at MetaGeek it feels like my head hasn’t stopped spinning. I thought it would be a good idea to collect and organize my thoughts in writing. Here is what this change means to me, and what it means for MetaGeek, our employees and our customers.
This is my dream job–not just this new role as CEO, but working for MetaGeek in general. My father owned and operated a print shop and publishing company, so I grew up in an entrepreneurial environment, and MetaGeek has always felt like home. During my 11 years at MetaGeek, I’ve worked in every part of the business and had 5 or 6 different distinct roles. I have had to do a lot of things I never imagined I could do, and I have learned a lot about myself in the process. I have discovered that I have just as much passion for designing a business as I do for designing an algorithm.
Working for MetaGeek isn’t just a dream job because it’s given me the opportunity to discover a new calling, though. Ryan founded MetaGeek with the goal of creating a company where he would enjoy the work and the experience of being at work, and he succeeded. MetaGeek’s core values: do stuff that matters, be better, and don’t go it alone, ensure a fulfilling work experience. MetaGeek employees can always expect to work in a collaborative environment, encouraged to try new things and take risks–that’s who we are.
Ryan created the Wi-Spy for himself. He needed a way to see the 2.4GHz spectrum without having to fight 40 other engineers for the spectrum analyzer. MetaGeek was born when it turned out that there were a lot of other people that were interested in seeing the 2.4GHz spectrum. MetaGeek’s focus on WiFi arose from focusing on the needs of those early customers. We’ve thrown ourselves into understanding our customers and their work and become WiFi experts in the process. As a result of that understanding, we’ve invented software innovations that have become standards throughout the industry.
Sustaining that kind of innovation is hard, especially the move from inventing for your own need to inventing for the needs of others. It is also difficult to manage the shift within a company from scaling a product to scaling the creation of new products. In his book The Startup Way, Eric Ries refers to this inflection point as “the second founding” of a startup. Freeing Ryan to focus on product development and mentoring the next generation of entrepreneurs is the first step in the second founding of MetaGeek. The MetaGeek Way is collaborating with our customers to create solutions that change the industry for the better. I look forward to the next chapter of that mission.