Mother’s work ethic = global corporate culture
Who would think that my experiences and observations as a pre-teen would become the basis for the operating culture in my later entrepreneurial years!
When my mother started a tailoring business, it was to provide the basics for her young family — food, clothing and a roof over our heads. The business was small (8 employees) but moderately successful with several loyal customers including a few dignitaries, such as Uganda’s first President’s wife, Miria Obote, and later, the many wives of the notorious Idi Amin. Who would have thought that I learned my first business lessons from my mother? It was how she ran her business that became engrained in my brain.
I noticed four key things:
First, how hard she worked — 12 hour days, six days a week were the norm; second, how well she treated her staff; third, the importance of exceptional customer service; and fourth, her generosity toward others.
I did not realize until I launched my own business that I carried my mother’s work DNA and the importance of these ethics in my own career.
Fast forward some forty years later….
With a great desire to be a master of my own destination, I found myself incorporating these traits as my engineering career developed, and then later when an entrepreneurial opportunity presented itself. I had promised myself that if I ever had a company of my own, the culture would be based on the same characteristics and positive emotions that my mother left me with. Her generosity is something that I try to emulate today at Transoft.
Twenty-five years later, the spirit of hard work and generosity is still present within Transoft Solutions. I feel that the culture that we have developed has been hugely important to our growth and strength. Transoft has grown into an 80 person operation, with offices in Richmond, Rotterdam, Gothenburg, Bangalore and Sydney, providing innovative and cost-effective solutions to transportation engineers across the world.
Over the next few months I will be sharing my insights about the road to entrepreneurship, the importance of building quality and sustainable companies, my personal tips on networking, hiring and career advancement, as well as the current and future state of the transportation engineering profession.
I hope you join me for the ride.