(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – cPanel Conference 2013 officially kicked off on Tuesday with a keynote speech from current Esigns.com CEO Robert Marsh. In it, Marsh discussed his hosting industry past and his experience with companies including EV1, EV1 Servers and Rackshack.
“Believe in your customers!”
“Believe, forgive and forget” Marsh told the speech’s attendees. “You can trust your customers. If you’re open, honest and completely transparent, your customers will work just as hard for you as you work for your customers.”
One of Marsh’s most challenging experiences was when his company’s data center faced a big challenge: An explosion. The unfortunate occurrence happened after considerable growth for the facility. “We’d been adding servers as quickly as we could build them,” Marsh stated.
Marsh received the call regarding the incident from a co-worker and rushed to the data center in just nineteen minutes.
In the aftermath, the company worked to reboot servers as technicians worked to clear up the mess.
Marsh noticed that communication with customers as to exactly what was happening was pivotal. “We communicated to customers what we were doing to resolve the issue and made it through the incident. We lost maybe two clients but more importantly the sales actually grew over next 30 days.”
Today Marsh looks back at the event and the adversity it presented. “It’s a testament to being open and honest.”
One of Marsh’s earliest companies offered dial-up internet during a time when many service providers were providing $17.99/month deals. Marsh found the answer to success as being an offering for “just ten bucks.” Later the dial-up service would evolve into shared hosting, then eventually to a dedicated service.
“Believe in yourself!”
Believing in one’s self was also a key point Marsh’s keynote emphasized. When nobody else wanted to listen and told him no, Marsh invested in a $1800 Linux-based hosting appliance. Marsh then found his company selling hosting so fast they couldn’t get enough servers in. “Believe in yourself to dig deep and find those opportunities and when someone tells you no, that’s where you realize you’re onto something pretty good!” he told attendees.
“Believe in your people!”
Hosting companies can also be on the receiving end of DDoS attacks. Trusting employees is essential. You need people working at your business who know how to deal with such issues. “Believing in them empowers them to find solutions to problems you can’t solve yourself,” Marsh emphasized
“Believe in your suppliers!”
This is one of the most challenging things to do. But if you’re able to overcome problems, it’s easy to accomplish success on a partnership basis. “Believing in your suppliers when you have every reason not to engineers a relationship,” noted Marsh.
“Forgive those that fail you!”
“When you’re able to forgive quickly and concentrate on solutions, that forgiveness builds a relationship that’s impenetrable. Those same companies that fail you will double down, work harder and do whatever it takes to support you” Marsh emphasized.
“Forget your failures!”
Back in his early days, Marsh made some investments that probably weren’t so sound. One such was a web TV device that was meant to help people get online. Out of two thousand ordered, Marsh found his company selling just about sixteen. Another fail point was DSL. The best way to deal with failure, however? Forget about it and move on.
“Never be the smartest guy in the room!”
“Always hire people who are smarter than you, emphasized Marsh. “This was so true for EV1. The team that surrounded me had knowledge that I could never hope to have! I had the ability to create a vision and pathway, but people around me were able to implement the vision and go forward.”
And Marsh’s last piece of advice? “Never stop changing.”