Intellisoft has been a leader in the Identity Management industry since the market’s conception nearly 15 years ago. Their solutions are deployed at the Pentagon, at 80+ Department of Defense (DOD) Facilities, and in the airports that surround our nation’s capital as well as some other big ones such as JFK, LaGuardia, Newark and Charlotte. Led by Greenville native David Peeples, the company is riding a recent wave of change. Its team of 12-full time employees just moved into new offices off of Laurens Road. With all of that going on, Peeples answered some of the Least Asked Questions this week.
A lot of entrepreneurs get caught up in the worrying about things like logos. What is your best advice for them to be really worrying about?
Logos, websites and social media by themselves may sell anything. However, not having something professional looking can hurt you. Doing your homework and putting together a solid business plan is very important. You need to be able to answer questions like. Can I be the best in my industry or in my special niche? Even if I am the best, can I be profitable?
Who was your first hire? Why?
I was my first hire. I wanted to make sure that I could be successful within the industry before I started putting other people’s livelihood on the line. When I was the main employee, I would look at myself in the mirror and ask, “if I had 100 employees that were just like me, would I be excited?” That is how I judged whether or not I was a good employee. When you are your own boss, you don’t have anybody to kick your ass. So I had to learn to kick my own. I’ve hired several people since my first hire but I always use myself as the measuring stick.
People say that at the end of the day, being the head of a startup is lonely because you don’t have someone to actually relate to. Do you feel that is true? Why?
The best way to cure this is to network with other entrepreneurs that will be able to understand you, give you perspective and help keep you going in the right direction. Anytime you decide to do something outside of the norm, it will be harder to relate to people who aren’t heading in the same direction.
What is the worst part of starting your own business?
If you truly study successful businesses, they all began as a grind. And even when things seem to be growing, things are never growing as quickly as you want. Achieving success in business requires changes, not just in your actions, but in you philosophies and attitudes. Success requires that you make changes to yourself and look in the mirror to own the burden of any failures. Reaching success will ultimately transform you as a person. So I believe it is crucial that you keep yourself surrounded with other people who can help through those transitions, can help give guidance and direction, can help create leadership within you. If you aren’t excited about embracing change, then I wouldn’t recommend starting your own business.