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Overcoming Obstacles To Facilitate Growth – Ep. 16 Rocket IT Business Podcast

         
EP16

Overcoming Obstacles To Facilitate Growth – Ep. 16 Rocket IT Business Podcast

         

In this segment of the Rocket IT Business Podcast, guest host Dan Frey sits down with the visionaries behind Rocket IT, Matt and Maureen Hyatt. Throughout their discussion, Matt and Maureen reflect on their journey to craft a successful business and how they continue to innovate 25 years later.

In This Episode, You’ll Hear More About…

  • The history of Rocket IT
  • What it takes to retain staying power
  • The notion of failing fast and pivoting
  • The risks needed to jumpstart a business
  • The importance of altering business models
  • Finding a significant purpose to guide a business
  • Lessons learned from living lean and working hard
  • Common challenges faced during a business’ start-up phase

Contact Information

Rocket IT | podcasts@rocketit.com | 770-441-2520

Resources Mentioned

When Do the Good Things Start

Like What Your Heard? Give Us Some Feedback!

podcasts@rocketit.com

Show Notes

Dan Frey (00:00:00):

Hello and welcome to the Rocket IT Podcast. My name is Dan Frey, and I’m really, really excited to be a guest host today because I get to do something that I think is going to be a blast for me. I get to hang out with two very good friends of mine, Matt and Maureen Hyatt, and the visionaries that were behind building an amazing business in Rocket IT.

Intro (00:00:20):

[Music Plays],

Dan Frey (00:00:32):

We’re going to be able to talk about a lot of great things today that even I, as their friend am looking forward to hearing some of these things that I want to go over with them, I don’t even know. So this is going to be, I think, an excellent podcast. You know, when I thought about it I think all of us, whether we work for somebody else or we work for ourselves, always love to hear the stories of people that went out there, took a risk, built a great business and made it work. And Rocket IT has done that for 25 years. So I’m very much excited to hear these two visionaries talk about where they came from, where they are and where they want to go. So with that being said, I want to welcome my friends, Matt and Maureen Hyatt, to the podcast. Guys, how are you?

Matt Hyatt (00:01:15):

Good!

Maureen Hyatt (00:01:15):

Great.

Matt Hyatt (00:01:15):

Thank you. We really appreciate you volunteering.

Dan Frey (00:01:19):

Yeah!

Matt Hyatt (00:01:23):

On our show, right?

Dan Frey (00:01:23):

This was a heck yes, it wasn’t just a yes thing. I think there’s going to be a lot of fun and you know, you guys have helped me prep great. You know, we’re going to cover like four primary quadrants. We’re gonna talk about those early days when, you know, when you think about business owners early days are always the freakiest time. So I can’t wait to hear about that, but then some of the obstacles that you guys have overcome. How you’re going to continue to stay relevant in this day and age and where you want to go and then maybe some have some fun before we get off this podcast. So you know, let’s just, let’s just dive right in if that’s okay with you guys. You good?

Matt Hyatt (00:01:56):

Yeah, go for it.

Dan Frey (00:01:58):

Alright. Let’s look at those early days. So Matt, you know, when did you decide like, Hey, I think I’m just going to go out on, I want to work for myself. I’m going to be an entrepreneur. I don’t want to work for somebody else. When was that for you?

Matt Hyatt (00:02:13):

Well, yeah, it’s something that I’ve thought about a lot. And I remember thinking about it as early as just being a kid. Yeah. I tell people sometimes I just remember riding the school bus, looking out the window of the businesses we were passing, trying to figure out maybe what kind of business I’d like to own someday. And so I think the seeds of it were planted early, something that I considered quite a lot, even as a kid, but it didn’t really happen until later. In fact, I was 25 when I started this business. And so,uyou know, there’s a little bit of a gap there between the early days of dreaming about it and the time it comes to actually execute. It was years that I worked in a traditional job working for other people and kind of learning a little bit about business and leadership and what it takes to work in a professional environment. That foundation was important as I got started and ready to start Rocket IT.

Dan Frey (00:03:08):

Was there ever a time when you just kind of almost got used to that environment and the entrepreneurial itch almost went away or was that always kind of hovering in the background?

Matt Hyatt (00:03:16):

That’s a great question. I, I sometimes wonder what would have happened if I hadn’t been laid off from my last job.

Dan Frey (00:03:25):

Oh wow.

Matt Hyatt (00:03:25):

That’s what happened, right. So I was, I was working for a company in sales doing sort of a low level management. So a rising, rising leader in that organization, and I sometimes wonder, you know, because one day guy showed up and gave me the proverbial pink slip said, Hey, we’re letting you go. And it was that sort of kick out into the street that I needed to work up the courage to actually go and start the business. So I do wonder that sometimes what would have happened. If, you know, that, that had never occurred. If I had continued working in that environment and I’m making money or would I still be doing that today? I don’t know.

Dan Frey (00:04:05):

Yeah. You know exactly what you just said is maybe what somebody out there really needed to just hear, because, you know, we’re kind of doing this right now at the peak of the COVID crisis in our country and layoffs have been pretty darn consistent in the last three months, so maybe there’s somebody out there that just heard, Wow. You know, that was actually something Matt Hyatt was grateful for. Not looking back and regretting because that might’ve been the catalyst to make you go do what you’ve done. So.

Matt Hyatt (00:04:29):

Yeah. You know, it’s funny you say that something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately, you know, Maureen and I are big fans of art. And so we got to museums and galleries when we’re traveling around and something I’ve been thinking about is what kinds of amazing new art we’re going to see come out of this as artists have been holdup in their studios and had an opportunity really think, and there’s probably a lot of emotions tied to a lot of things that are going on as well. Not just COVID. So same kind of thing. You, you might see an explosion. In fact, I bet you do see an explosion of sort of the continued “gig” economy and folks building small businesses and starting up right now because of necessity. Hey, you know what, I’m not working right now. I’ve been thinking about this idea and I’ve got a ton of time on my hands when I get started right now. And so you may indeed see a bunch of new businesses come out of that.

Dan Frey (00:05:27):

You know, that is such an interesting perspective. I have not thought of it that way. Maybe it gives us all a little bit of anticipation. Right? Good that can come out of the challenges that we’re dealing with. So, so as far as computers, like when did you get the computer bug? What was, what was the thing to go on in that industry?

Matt Hyatt (00:05:48):

You know I had a couple of uncles when I was growing up that were they had worked, both of them had worked a sort of electronics field. One of them was working for the phone company and other one was doing appliance repair. And so they were both very technically minded and they were the people that I knew that were sort of the earliest adopters of home PCs and game systems and things like that. And so, you know, one of those uncles, so was close with my dad. And so it’s been a lot of time with that family. And I remember that was the first time I ever saw the Pong video game. You know, we’re bouncing a ball back and forth first time I ever saw that was at his house. And that was also, he was the first person I ever met that had a home PC little Texas Instruments computer that he had set up.

Matt Hyatt (00:06:41):

And I was just fascinated by that. I thought that was so cool to have effectively. Now we didn’t think of it this way, but you know, it’s different than a TV, which is not interactive. TV would just sit there and watch what happens on the screen. But with with a computer very interactive. You know, in order to have anything happen on the screen, you’ve got to type something in and you can get a response from what you typed. I just thought that was really cool. And so that was probably an early start. And then later we moved and ended up moving next door to another uncle and my cousin, Andy, next door had a computer. And that, I think that’s kind of sealed the deal for me cause I got to spend a lot of time over there and we would do stuff on the computer together and my uncle was very instructive.

Matt Hyatt (00:07:30):

So he was happy to lend us advice and you know, I’d go over there and ask him questions and he would show me stuff on the screen. And I don’t know, I just thought it was fascinating. So that was kind of the early interest in computers. It wasn’t until later that I kind of figured out that that might be what I wanted to do for a living. That was what sparked the early interest.

Dan Frey (00:07:51):

Did it drive your college experience? Was that what you studied in school?

Matt Hyatt (00:07:56):

Well, you know, it, it did. So funny enough, I’ll tell you a little bit about that. So I, I tell people, you know, I was a terrible student in high school. I really, I don’t think I could have been more disinterested in what was happening in high school, not a good student. I was just not particularly interested in what was happening there. And as a result, you know, my grades reflected that, right. I tell people sometime that I was, I was the 20% of the class that was responsible for the top 80%.

Matt Hyatt (00:08:32):

So, you know, I just, I didn’t like it all that much, but when I was approaching graduation and that it barely graduate from, from high school, you know, what do you do next? And back then, it kind of felt like there’s really only a couple of choices. You’re either gonna join the military or you’re going to go to college. It’s kind of feels like the two paths that are available. And I knew that I didn’t take instruction well, so I didn’t want to join the military. And and so I opted to go to college and because of the grades and finances and so forth, you know, a four year university was out of the question. But I could probably swing a stent at a community college. So I went to a little community college down in Tampa and enrolled in school and they asked me what I was interested in.

Matt Hyatt (00:09:22):

And I told them I was interested in computer science and they said, great, we’re going to put you in a, an English class and a psychology class and an American history class. Oh, you said computers. We have some computers I’ll put you in a Fortran. They literally had two, my recollection is they had two classes available in computers and one was a Fortran computer programming and other ones, COBOL computer programming. Both of which were already sort of ancient languages even back in the Eighties. And so I enrolled in a Fortran computer programming class, but I spent most of my time in college, really, you know, doing the basics, the one-on-one stuff with English and American history. I did learn from that experience that I not built to be a software developer. You just, you gotta have a tremendous amount of patience for that.

Matt Hyatt (00:10:14):

And a willingness to really kind of dive in and be super focused on, on a very specific thing for a good long time. And there are aspects of that ring true, but there are also aspects of that they’re just not me. So that was helpful. But to fund college I was working two part time jobs. I worked for JC Penney as a bill collector after, you know, in the evenings. And then I also worked part time for a little software store at the mall called Babbage’s Software. So that was what I was doing to fund my college. And Babbage’s approached me one day. And said, you know what we’re thinking about opening another store. If this is a retail store at the mall, right. We’re thinking about opening another store and we need an assistant manager. It’s a full time position.

Matt Hyatt (00:11:02):

And we wondered if you’d be interested in that job. And I thought to myself, you know, what’s the fastest way for me to learn about computers and management and have a chance at opening a business someday, is it to study American history and Fortran at college? Or is it to take a job in management in the software industry. And so I pretty quickly made the decision to drop out of college, quit my job at JC Penney and went to work full time for Babbage’s. And, that went well. I went to work as an assistant manager and within just, I don’t remember exactly how long three or six months or so. They gave me my own store at Tampa Bay Center and at the ripe old age of 19 I’m managing a little computer store, computer software store at the mall. And so I thought I had arrived.

Dan Frey (00:11:51):

I love it. You’re big time!

Matt Hyatt (00:11:54):

That, that, that was what kind of got me started in the IT field. A little side story. People used to come in the software store and they would buy a software, right. And one day, one of my customers was saying, Hey, do you know anybody that could come out to my house and install this software on my computer? I’d, I’d be willing to pay. I think it was 25 bucks an hour is what he offered. Which was more than I made as the manager. And that was my first consulting gig, as I said, well, I can do that. And he says, I hope you would say that. So I ended up going to his house several times over the next year or so, and just installing software for him and, you know, getting him set up. And that was probably my first income from computer consulting.

Dan Frey (00:12:37):

I love it. That’s one of the service phase started, right. Not just, not just the hardware software phase. Love it. So did that influence the business model? Like when you actually started to then go out and do your own thing? I mean, what was it?

Matt Hyatt (00:12:51):

Yeah, probably influenced a little bit. So my, my original business plan, I sat down, you know, after I was laid off sat down and wrote a business plan. Mmm. That primarily was we were going to build and sell high quality clone PCs, and, and we would deliver them onsite to our customers. And that would be sort of our competitive differentiator, you know, the place where I had worked before we built PCs there also, but it was a retail environment. So customers will come to us place the order, they go home for a week or two, we built the computer up for them and they come back and pick it up. And, you know, we give them a big giant box or three and pat them on the back and tell them good luck.

Matt Hyatt (00:13:35):

Yeah. And so, you know, our competitive differences was that we would take them onsite and set them up turnkey so that people could begin using the computers right away and have to be technologists in order to know how to get things going. And so that part of it was probably influenced by my previous experience. But there was one paragraph I remember, well, maybe even one sentence on that business plan that said, Oh, by the way, we will also provide a computer services. So if we’re out at somebody’s business and setting up a computer for them and they need help with, you know, a switch or router or whatever, that we would do that to on an hourly basis. And so there was a small part of the business that was sort of service forward, but it was originally going to be primarily, we’re going to build and sell expensive computers essentially.

Dan Frey (00:14:23):

Well, you know, it doesn’t seem that long ago. I mean your story I’m, so I’m remembering, and I’m still feeling those times. Like that seems like a couple of weeks ago, and this is what over 25 years ago. So it’s crazy. So when did the the, the, the beauty join the business and Mrs. Hyatt sitting there next to you, when did Maureen finally come into play and what was what was Maureen’s involvement in those early days?

Matt Hyatt (00:14:51):

You want to take that one?

Maureen Hyatt (00:14:52):

Uh I was there before. I was there when he was working for the little computer company here in Norcross.

Matt Hyatt (00:15:01):

You were there even before that. You were there for Babbages.

Maureen Hyatt (00:15:04):

Yeah. We started dating. We were in Tampa and a month into our dating relationship, he said, “Hey, I’m moving to Georgia.”

Matt Hyatt (00:15:16):

This is not part of this story.

Maureen Hyatt (00:15:19):

So you know, he’d had enough of Tampa and wanted to do something new. So he left. Anyways, So he came up here, started working for this little computer business. And I moved up the next year and yeah, I was there. I was there when he got laid off and I was there when, within a week he had a business plan and had gotten a business license. I couldn’t believe how fast I thought this guy’s nuts. This guy is nuts.

Matt Hyatt (00:15:50):

She still thinks that.

Maureen Hyatt (00:15:51):

I still think that he’s proven it. Ubut yeah, so it’s, it’s, it’s been a journey for sure.

Dan Frey (00:16:00):

So there’s, there’s always the risk taker and there’s usually the more methodical mind that says, Hey, have you really thought this through? Was that you Maureen?

Maureen Hyatt (00:16:08):

Probably, probably, but I didn’t express it because he was pretty excited about it. And I didn’t want to take the wind out of his sails and I thought, you know, who knows? Maybe.

Matt Hyatt (00:16:21):

That’s cool. That’s interesting because I’ll tell you what I felt through that. Yeah. Was entirely support. Oh, awesome. Yeah. Yeah. Entirely supportive.

Maureen Hyatt (00:16:29):

It was all on the surface. Inside.

Matt Hyatt (00:16:30):

Obviously we didn’t know each other well!

Maureen Hyatt (00:16:34):

You know, we hadn’t been dating very long, so it wasn’t as invested as I became over time. But I did, I did buy him his first computer when he moved here. Cause I was gainfully employed and he was winging it with his new business.

Matt Hyatt (00:16:55):

Yeah, that’s true. So, you know, between moving to Georgia and getting started in this new job and being in sales, which as you know, is feast or famine, you know, all those things together. And then I would say probably just not very mature in my, you know, financial endeavors. Maureen, for sure, more than a more mature out of the two of us, the more conservative fiscally responsible of the two of us. So yeah, when it came time to sit down and write that, that business plan, I remember there were a few things that I needed to get started and one was a computer and I remember one was a lamp, you know, from my desk because I just didn’t have much, right. You know, 25 years old and probably should have had more. But you know, in retrospect probably better shape than I was, but I was still living in the sort of the collegiate life, you know, a cardboard box,

Maureen Hyatt (00:17:52):

You had all your money in stereo equipment.

Matt Hyatt (00:17:55):

Probably true. So Maureen did again, entirely support. She helped helping kind of get things kicked off and you know, I’m still paying that debt today. No, I’m kidding.

Dan Frey (00:18:12):

The wind in the sails, right. The one that actually has to be supportive that gets you where you want to go.

Matt Hyatt (00:18:18):

People ask me sometimes where it would be without this lady. And I told him I’d be living under a bridge somewhere down by the river. Pretty much. Yeah, exactly.

Dan Frey (00:18:30):

I got to ask, was there ever a long hair phase for you?

Matt Hyatt (00:18:32):

For me? Yeah, no.

Dan Frey (00:18:38):

Never had a mullet back then? I see you with a mullet.

Maureen Hyatt (00:18:38):

I was going to say, I have photos.

Matt Hyatt (00:18:41):

I bet Maureen would enjoy telling you the story.

Dan Frey (00:18:43):

I know that’s not part of the game plan here, but you know.

Matt Hyatt (00:18:46):

I see you totally going off script.

Maureen Hyatt (00:18:50):

I didn’t know him at the time, but rumor has it. And I have seen photos and his mother has confirmed the, did go through a phase where he did have the little, little tail and the little rat tail in the back that that was dyed blonde. I didn’t see that. I believe it was probably early high school.

Matt Hyatt (00:19:08):

I, you know, just to be clear if it weren’t already abundantly clear, I’ve never been cool. Cool, cool. At the time felt dangerous. I don’t know.

Dan Frey (00:19:29):

There’s got to be some sort of blast email go out, going out Sunday morning with mullet Matt on it. I think,

Matt Hyatt (00:19:35):

Yeah. I don’t think I’ve ever rocked the mullet look.

Maureen Hyatt (00:19:39):

It’s fun to talk about, but I’m more loyal than that. I wouldn’t out him.

Matt Hyatt (00:19:41):

Some somebody sent a picture out recently. I can’t remember. Wait, wait, wait. So we’ve got a little audience here in our studio and they are cracking up.

Maureen Hyatt (00:19:51):

She was taking notes on her phone.

Dan Frey (00:19:54):

Note to self find Mullet Matt picture.

Matt Hyatt (00:19:58):

But I did find a picture recently of me when I was younger and I did have hair at one time. I was born this way and reverted quickly after I turned 20 or so.

Dan Frey (00:20:12):

To the challenging phase, this has been phase, but you know, no business. Everybody likes to think of business owners that have made it, got it easy. But a lot of times they don’t like to think about what you went through to get where you got. So when you think about it, especially in those early days, what kind of challenges were you guys really up against out of the gate?

Matt Hyatt (00:20:30):

Yeah, so many, so many yeah, I don’t even know where to start. There are, there are a lot of challenges that we’ve worked through over the years and you know, and there’s still, it’s not like we’re in a challenge for you environment right now. Know what I is better is we’re better equipped both from a maturity standpoint and financially, and with the team around us now than, than we were 20 years ago. But you know, I’ll try to think of a few challenges that we worked through over the years. I do remember you know, one time I was working at home and working out of our house. So this was probably around 2000 to 2002 or so. So you know, the business is six or seven years old at that point and gotten to the point where I was like, you know what, I’m ready to move out of the house and start hiring folks have done that once before.

Matt Hyatt (00:21:22):

And you know, that had its own challenges, but that season I was working out of the house essentially as an independent consultant, but decided to move out of the house and into an office and I’m to start hiring folks again. And that took a lot of planning and and a lot of faith really that we were going to be able to carry it off. I remember one thing about that was that, that move to move out of the spare bedroom of our house and into a little executive suites office. So just imagine that, you know, 10 by 10 or 12 by 12, a office with a couple of desks in it. I remember it came furnished had phones an internet connection. There was a copier, you know, down the hall, a break room and stuff like that. But that little room was essentially renting and the price to do that per month was more than my house payment. And so just the courage to kind of say, okay, I’m going to go out and do this. Yeah. You know, you’ve got to hire a person they’re going to want to be paid. And that’s just another expense that first is entirely a leap of faith and it’s entirely expense. There’s no income tied to that.

Maureen Hyatt (00:22:35):

And also at this point we had two very young kids. I had quit my career to be a stay at home mom because this guy said, I think we can do it. And I thought, I don’t see that, but okay.

Matt Hyatt (00:22:52):

Again, all support. Yeah.

Maureen Hyatt (00:22:54):

We lost, we lost my income, which was the steady income. And and also with that, my insurance benefits two kids under the age of two. So it was, it was, it was a lot of faith involved in that, a lot of faith. And at every turn I thought, I was just thinking, I don’t know how we’re going to make this work. We just took it little by little. And there was a lot of faith. There was a lot of conversations throughout those early years where I would start to lose my faith in it because things were just so strained financially.

Maureen Hyatt (00:23:38):

He would just sit me down when I get to that place and just say, I think, I really think I can do this. Please don’t give up on me. I really, I can do it. He never, at least to me. And it probably was just make me feel better, but he always came off as he felt very strongly that this was going to happen at some point. And he’s not given up,

Matt Hyatt (00:24:00):

And I still think that.

Maureen Hyatt (00:24:00):

Jury’s still out on that one! Still trying to make a success of himself.

Dan Frey (00:24:07):

I’ve experienced that in those early days when you’re taking on cost and taking that risk, which has always some of the scariest times, especially when you’re actually then, like Maureen letting go of the stability of insurance and her career. You know, Matt, I’ve heard you say fail fast. Was there ever times in the early days where it’s like, well, we better call an audible on that decision cause it didn’t work. And you had to pivot quick cause you realize that you did fail fast, any moments of those?

Matt Hyatt (00:24:37):

Well, sure. Probably, you know, I should probably clarify I have sort of a love, hate relationship with the phrase fail fast. If, if I were a complete believer in that philosophy, Rocket IT would not exist. You know, if, if in the first half of the organization’s life, if I had given up and thrown in the towel, this organization wouldn’t exist and there has been at least one time where it probably would have been easier to just close the office. And, do something different. Whether I take a job and you know, there’s something very seriously considered that one or two points in my career at Rocket IT or close the business and start up another business next the next day. Would have been easier. And so I see so many startups these days where that’s the mantra and that’s a goal. That’s a key goal is okay, get this thing running and figure out if it’s going to fly or not.

Matt Hyatt (00:25:45):

And to me, that conjures up this idea of what we’re just going to throw up stuff up against the wall and see if anything sticks. And I don’t love that. I, I think it’s more like, Hey, you know what you’ve made a commitment to make something happen here. And if you believe in that commitment and you believe in your vision for what can happen, then you’re going to get through thick and thin in order to see it through to cause it to come to fruition. And so on one hand, yes, I totally agree. Look, if something’s completely not working, then fine. Throw it out the window and try something different. But I believe that with ideas, I don’t necessarily believe that with businesses. I think that if you’ve got strategies and tactics, and I think you should believe in and stick with your strategy and your goal and your purpose, but I think if your tactics aren’t working, then toss it and try something different.

Matt Hyatt (00:26:40):

That’s certainly the case. But, you know, and to give an example of the pivoting idea and where that’s happened for those that maybe aren’t as familiar with Rocket IT we don’t build and sell home PCs anymore. You know, that was the original business idea right through, through that out of the window in the mid nineties, early, early on. And we really pivoted towards being more of a service oriented organization. And so that wasn’t to fail the business and start a new business that was adapt, right? Make changes to the existing business and keep the people that you work with and keep the commitment that you have to your customers and your community, and to see it through. But we’re going to take a little bit of a different of attack in order to add value and keep that business running. And so there’s that kind of pivot.

Matt Hyatt (00:27:31):

And then there was, there have been, you know, at least one major pivot in the way that we deliver those services over the years. Early on, we sold time by the hour. That’s kind of how a lot of consultants work and that’s how we worked early on. And so if you need a computer consultant, you would call us up and say, yeah, I need a computer tech out here to come help with X, Y, or Z, and we’d run out and we would take care of whatever it is that we were hired to do. And then we would give them a bill for the amount of time we were there at the end of the day, it’s a very long story. I could probably do an entire podcast on just that topic. So I’ll try and make it short, but I realized that that is not a win, win proposition selling time by the hour.

Matt Hyatt (00:28:15):

Yeah. And I know a lot of industries still work that way. You know, your plumber probably gonna charge you by the hour. Your lawyers are going to charge you by the hour. Yeah. But for us, we felt like if we’re charging by the hour in a weird sort of perverted way, you’re almost incented to have problems in a way. You’re incented for it to take a long time because literally get paid more. If it takes a long time to fix the problem. If there are a lot of problems and I want a business that’s incented for having a, a good experience. And so a major pivot that we did early on was a pivot towards what I call subscription services, where basically you pay a monthly fee, that’s roughly tied to the size and complexity of your organization. We make sure everything runs smoothly. And if it doesn’t, then we’re on the hook, where are the, where are the ones that come to the rescue and have to spend a lot of time and money to make it right. And I think that’s the correct way to do it. So that’s another example of a pivot that we’ve we made early on that I think has benefited both people that we serve, but also our team and the people that we work with here.

Dan Frey (00:29:22):

So this topic will come back up and we actually start talking about like the growth staying relevant, but I think it’s also relevant to your, your, your obstacles phase, your challenges phase you’ve, you’ve always been about relationship. And really, like you just said, the, the experience of the client. And I don’t want to bill a client by the hour. I want to bill that client toward an experience and achieve that experience. How did that, do you think that had impact in terms of minimizing the obstacles like, or getting you farther along faster, because that was your approach relative to other people in your industry?

Matt Hyatt (00:29:58):

Yeah, I think so. In some, in some ways I think, you know, there are probably a couple of things we could touch on there. One, one is I think that it’s really important to kind of figure out what gets you out of bed in the morning. What is it that sort of drives you? And so for us, you know, figuring out what our purpose is beyond just, Hey, you know, you’ve got a mission, which is what, and you’ve got a purpose, which is why, you know, your mission says, Hey, you know, we’re going to provide a great experience with computers, for businesses, that sort of thing, a purpose is that that calling that we all have to act. And so kind of figuring out our purpose early on, which is helping people thrive was, was and remains very critical to our operations. Understanding why we get out of bed and why we do what we do helps us do that well. And if there’s ever a question about you know, a particular situation, you know, whether we ought to move left or right how we might support somebody and and their business, or what we’re doing in the community, if we kind of go back to what that purpose is of helping people thrive, that helps clarify direction that we should go. And so I think that part of it is, is super important. There was a, there was a second part of that that I was going to touch on and I lost it. I got so excited about the purpose.

Dan Frey (00:31:25):

Well, the challenging phase back in that day were a lot of, I guess, your competitors. Were they more about the, what? I mean, were you more of the visionary that can do the why and the purpose and they were still doing the, what the hourly charging?

Matt Hyatt (00:31:36):

No, I, I wish I wish that, you know, the day that I started my business, I knew what the purpose was. It didn’t come until much later and, you know, bring up the challenges part of that. I do want to complete that second thought while it’s still on my mind. And then we kind of come back to that if you don’t mind. But the other part of that is if, if you are, this is, I think this is improved over the years, but certainly early on and in Rocket IT’s history, you could tell a computer tech or a geek just about by walking down the street, like he didn’t even have to open your mouth. He could tell you, and you got the proverbial pocket protector and, you know, whatever the garb costume that we would wear. Right? So there is a difference between people that are interested in the computer and what’s on this screen and people that are interested in other humans, there is a key differentiator there.

Matt Hyatt (00:32:33):

And so a lot of us and I’m in this boat. So I’m not trying to point my at anyone else, but a lot of us got into the technology business because we’re fascinated by technology. Not many of us get into the technology business because we love other people. You know, I’m an introverted person that, you know, I was fascinated by technology. I told you that earlier. I didn’t figure out that I liked people until later. That’s the truth, right? It wasn’t until years later when I had started hiring people. So this is, you know, post 2003, when I moved out of the house and started hiring folks and had some tough experiences through that. I mean, it was a big surprise to me, in retrospect, it shouldn’t have been, but it was a huge surprise to me at the time that we could go hire other people and bring them into the office.

Matt Hyatt (00:33:22):

And they weren’t as fired up about doing a great job in serving people as I was. And so we had some, some negative experiences in there and a lot of learning experiences through that hiring best practices, leadership best practices mentorship best practices, you know, lots of stuff. And almost all of those problems were, you know, if I wanted to know who was responsible, I could just go home and look in the mirror. Cause it was, you know, it was me, but you did learn through that experience. And what I finally realized is if I wanted to find other people that were really kind of as fired up as I was doing a great job in providing great customer service, then I needed to identify what is the trait that makes, makes me different than the next computer geek. And it was really a search through that process.

Matt Hyatt (00:34:16):

And it took awhile, you know, it took months of sitting down and really kind of thinking through what makes me tick, why do I get out of bed in the morning? What makes me feel successful? And over time I was able to figure out, you know, what, I, I think what, when I feel really best about myself is when I feel like I’ve made a significant impact in someone else’s life. You know, bonus if it’s a positive one. Right?

Dan Frey (00:34:43):

Absolutely.

Matt Hyatt (00:34:45):

Yeah, so that, that was, that’s a big thing that I think helped get us to the point where we could figure out what our driving purpose was. And I think that is a key differentiator from maybe the next guy or, you know, down the street, running, running their business.

Dan Frey (00:35:03):

So, it really kind of plays into growing this business now and what your future is because, you know, I know a lot about Rocket IT and I know you guys, I know your clients and everybody sees you in the way you just explained yourself. You were as much relationship company is you are a tech company, right? So perhaps, maybe that is part of the, what got you out of that obstacle, challenging phase and maybe into a brand of what Rocket IT is. So as you look toward the future, what are some of the things you have in your pocket? Like you’re very community involved, which, you know, You, and I’ve talked on the side and you and I are both more into the introverted category. That’s a, that’s a challenge for you, but you don’t let that challenge hold you back. You guys are both out there, you’re in the community. You’re involved. How are you playing that into actually maybe growing the business and staying relevant in the times that we’re in?

Matt Hyatt (00:35:58):

Well, I would say yes, absolutely. Over the years, we have grown our business and extended our reach into the community, through relationships. And, you know, at some point I think a lot of people and I’m in this camp realize that maybe the key to life here on earth is a relationship, right? Relationships with our fellow human, our neighbor, people that we work with. So our team, you know, the kids, all of those things, that’s, that’s at least that’s what gets me fired up.

Matt Hyatt (00:36:33):

And I think that’s true for a lot of people. So if you’re going to, if you realize at some point, you know what I feel like what I have to contribute is helping other people be successful. Well, then you kind of figure out, Oh gosh, I need to meet as many people as I can. And look for those opportunities. You know, they don’t come about every day. Not everyone is in a place where they want or need help or are open to receiving it. But if you are out in the community expressing interest in others, lots and lots of opportunities are uncovered in that. And so one of the things that I’ve tried to do as I’ve built the business is to get out into the community and get to know as many people well, as I can. I don’t, I’m not crazy about superficial relationships.

Matt Hyatt (00:37:27):

You know, I have a tough time in a crowded room, but in small groups and one-to-one I can go deep and really get to know people a little bit and allow them to get to know me better and all kinds of opportunities come out of that opportunities to help one another, opportunities to add value to one another and business opportunities certainly come out of that as well. So one thing that Maureen and I have worked hard at over the years is how do we create a a business and a lifestyle that it is very autonomous and a team that feels empowered and authorized to run the day to day business which frees us up in our personal lives to spend more time with others and to do things in the community and to spend time with one another and travel and that sort of thing.

Matt Hyatt (00:38:22):

Yeah. When I think about the future of the business, there are a few things that are very, very interesting to me. I am very, very interested in the people around me winning. You know, I want, I want them to experience many of the same benefits of entrepreneurship and working in a great business that I enjoy and Maureen enjoys. And so we try to create an environment here at Rocket IT where everyone is very clear on why we’re here and what we’re trying to do and how their role contributes to that to that goal and that vision. And so that’s an important part of it. And as I look forward, I want more of that. I want, I want folks to feel very empowered. I imagine the day that a Rocket IT will run without Maureen and me. And my job right now is to ensure that that’s a successful experience for everyone involved.

Matt Hyatt (00:39:23):

And that’s the team, that’s our customers and that’s community. And so we’re building a platform if you will, to enable that success and to set that foundation up so that it can happen. I sometimes tell folks years ago, and I don’t remember how many years ago, probably, I don’t know, seven, 10 years ago. I wrote an article for our blog, which is still out there somewhere. If you want to go look it up on our Rocket IT’s website about the hundred year business plan. What I was thinking about at that time was you hear about some of these businesses that have been around for a hundred years or more, and what did they do foundationally in order to set the business up for that kind of success. And you don’t get far into that thought process where you realize, well, one thing that has to happen is there has to be a transition from me as the CEO to somebody else as the CEO.

Matt Hyatt (00:40:19):

Yeah. The business has to be able to, if it’s going to reach its hundredth anniversary, you remember, I started the business when I was 25 years old. I’d be 125. Probably not going to be here to see that. And when necessarily at some point the business must transition from Matt Hyatt is here every day, to Matt Hyatt is never here, right. It just has to happen. And so part of my goal is to make sure that while I am a steward of this company, and that’s what I am, I’m a steward of this organization. I need to make sure that I’m laying the foundation and putting the people and processes and systems in place that enable the business to run without my help. And when that occurs, well, then Maureen and I are free to sail off into the sunset. And the team is free to to take over the reigns and become the next stewards of Rocket IT. It that’s a big part of what we’re trying to accomplish. And I see, no, I don’t know that that transition is eminent, but I bet that it’s not terribly long. I don’t think we’re going to have this conversation again in 25 more years, right. At some point that transition will happen. And and I see that in our future and I fully expect that that’s going to be a successful run because I, I know that this team is capable of running this business without my help.

Dan Frey (00:41:42):

So I got to go off script and, and and ask you this, cause this

Matt Hyatt (00:41:47):

There’s a script? I didn’t get a copy!

Dan Frey (00:41:51):

I’ve worked with a lot of leaders. I think in principle, succession planning and building the bench has a sound principle that everybody understands and gets. But understanding and getting versus actually doing are two different things. You just kind of told us how you’re doing it, which is very clear, but what I’ve also seen in you that I don’t see in a lot of leaders that I work with is that you’ve been able to maintain your own health. And I’m not literally talking about physical health. I’m talking about Hyatt’s it’s and this is Maureen too, your overall wellbeing as you let go, which we’ve already heard about all your obstacles and all that you live through. I can only imagine, like when you’re empowering other people, letting go, not micromanaging, not poking and prodding is not easy. And eventually you’re talking about moving on. So how have you two taking care of yourself? And I’m not, again, it’s not a physical thing. It’s just an overall well-being thing as you basically multiply and in to other people, how do you, how do you do that? I think a lot of people can’t, and that’s what holds them.

Matt Hyatt (00:43:02):

Maureen, you want to hop in here?

Maureen Hyatt (00:43:05):

It’s definitely a process. It’s taken little steps at a time and see how it feels and see how it works and making sure that it works for people on the other side of us. And, and for us.

Dan Frey (00:43:20):

Maybe a series of little pilots?

Maureen Hyatt (00:43:23):

Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s what it is. I think you just kind of dip your toe in the water a little bit, and then you go a little bit further and you just, you just constantly kind of check in on where we are. How does this feel? How does this feel to the other people? How do they feel about having more responsibility and their contribution? And then you just kind of go from there and see where it leads.

Matt Hyatt (00:43:46):

Absolutely. And you know, the three of us on this call are are parents. And so we all experienced this, right. You know, we raise our kids and set them off into the world and there’s a gradual letting go process. And there’s some faith in that and trust. And you know, certainly there are sometimes mistakes and setbacks and you kind of get through that and move on. But yeah, that is certainly one of the early things that I had to kind of figure out when I was hiring people, is that you’ve got to trust folks to figure things out and be okay with people making mistakes. If you’re not okay with people making mistakes, then you are relegated to always doing the work yourself. You’re going to be, you know, tied to your business forever. If you’re the only one that can do certain things.

Matt Hyatt (00:44:37):

And I know that I didn’t want that for myself. And I didn’t want that for my team. And certainly there was a little, you know, certainly there are lots of opportunities, right? Where you try things in small ways and see how it goes. But I think a bigger part of it, an important part of it that is, is you just got to allow people to make mistakes and believe that they’re just that. If you’re, if you’ve hired folks and you’re helping to mentor and develop folks that are similarly wired and after the same purpose, then you don’t have to worry too much about motive when it comes to mistakes. You’re just worried about training and making sure that we’re pointing in the right direction. And so the job becomes not so much a, Oh my gosh, you made this mistake. What were you thinking of?

Matt Hyatt (00:45:33):

Well, that didn’t work did it. I’ve made that mistake seven times myself. And here’s what I did differently. That kind of got me out of that rut and then just redirecting folks and giving them some tools to kind of get back on the right path. But there’s a, there’s a little bit of faith and trust there that says, you know what? I’m not going to automatically assume that this person made this mistake on purpose or this person was being malicious somehow. I’m going to automatically assume that this person is trying to do the right thing and made the best decision that they could at the time. And it happened to be the wrong one. Man. If I had a dollar for every time, I made a mistake, I’d be way richer than I am now because you know, you learn that way and I’ve made plenty of mistakes. I make mistakes everyday.

Matt Hyatt (00:46:16):

So I think part of that is just trust and competence that people are really trying to do the right thing. And then just helping them find their path towards that. That’s all they need. Here, I’ll tell you a little side story real quick that I think might shed some light on this. I’ve got a buddy of mine that worked for himself, a one person business out of his house for years. And eventually he sold that business. Then he went to work for an organization. And at that organization, he ended up with a management role, which you can imagine how that would happen. Hey, you ran your own business. You must be a manager. He ended up a management role and had not one but two assistants, which is amazing. And so he was in this role for awhile. I bet he’d been working there for a year with these two assistants and he and I were sitting down one day and he said, Hey, Matt, I want to tell you something.

Matt Hyatt (00:47:10):

I think I’m finally figured out the assistant thing. And I said, Oh yeah, what’d you what’d you figure out. And he said, yeah, if there’s something that I can do and they can do, they’re going to do it. I’m not going to do it. And that is one example of letting things go. If this person, if you’ve got two people, the organization can do things, then let’s delegate that to a, to the assistant and let them do it. Yeah. Be okay with, if they don’t do it exactly the way that you would have every time. And that is so smart, that is exactly the way to do it. And so I have been very, very focused for years now on making sure that there’s nothing in the business that only I can do. That everything in the business can be done by other people and then allowing them to do that.

Matt Hyatt (00:48:02):

Guess what, you know, Maureen said, it’s, it’s true. And this is true. This is a very slow process, right? This is something that for us took years, but it’s a rapidly changing process. And so I tell people, I always kind of thought, well, here’s what it’s going to look like. This is going to be like pushing a big Boulder over a small Hill. That is going to be really hard at first. And you’re going to push and push and push and push. And then gradually, as you got sort of the crest of the Hill, it would get a little bit easier. And then on the other side, it would begin to roll slowly and eventually it would use flying on the Hill. Well, it wasn’t like that at all. The way that it was is pushing a Boulder over a Seesaw. Yeah. It’s very difficult on the front end to kind of get it to the, to the mid point of the Seesaw.

Matt Hyatt (00:48:49):

But you get a few inches on that. Other end. It doesn’t just gradually start rolling as you know, all it wants everything just move over. And so it’s been years now, but several years ago we reached the other end of that Seesaw and the other end of the fulcrum, where it just went whamp. And then all of a sudden the team is carrying the day to day business. And there’s nothing left in the business. There are very few things left in the business that require me personally to be here, to do those things. And so I, all of a sudden ended up with a team that’s humming and running and feeling empowered and authorized and equipped to run virtually every aspect of the day to day business. And it’s no longer, not only is it no longer necessary for me to be here every moment of every day to do things, but I can, I can be in the way. I can be a pest.

Matt Hyatt (00:49:45):

And so we reached a point in the business now where, you know, I come in at certain times, and there are certain things that I still do. And most of that is around mentoring and working with with my leadership team. But the day to day actions of the business and the tasks of the business are carried by other people in the organization. And eventually I’ll give away that mentorship stuff too. And someone else will inherit, you know, other people inherit those, those responsibilities, and then I won’t be needed at all. And we will to go sail off into the ocean some day.

Dan Frey (00:50:19):

I’ll tell you what, to hear all that. And I don’t know what our listeners are hearing, but I’ll say I’m hearing two key things from this. And this isn’t me being agenda-fide and trying to do a Rocket IT commercial. I’m literally learning with all of our listeners out there. You seem to be a leader that is actually prioritizing relationship as much as objective. So you can have the objective of saying, I’m not going to be the only one that can only do this thing in my business. That’s a very objective answer. So I’m going to make sure that the people that work for me can, can run this place. So I’m not just the one, but the way you execute is, and I heard you say something to the extent of like values or your people trust you as much as you trust them. And I have to believe that that has sped up the delegation or the multiplication, because there isn’t fear. There’s a lot of psychological safety between your team and you, where if there is worry, it’s not held in, it’s addressed. And it’s you get past that. So that you’re raising that just the competence of your team, but the relational chemistry inside your team that is your culture. And that’s what I’m hearing. And, and, and so like, if I’m talking about Matt Hyatt to one of my clients, now I can say, I know a guy that does this. That’s really what he does really well. And that’s what Maureen backs him in doing. And I think a lot of leaders out there don’t do that. They’re one or the other. So that’s just the interviewer opinion.

Matt Hyatt (00:51:44):

I appreciate that. And, and you know, I I’d say I’ll say this, it it’s a learned behavior for me. You know, I, it wasn’t something that I figured out when I was 25 or 30 or even 35, I don’t think. It’s something that I’ve learned over time and I a hundred percent believe that other people can learn that too. And it’s just a matter of just really being thoughtful and intentional about designing your business and designing your life. And so I think it’s important for each of our team members to design their lives around what they want to accomplish. And and I hope that Rocket IT continues to be part of that story that moving forward. Maureen’s been awfully quiet back here, and she’s even literally seated behind me just a little bit, but I, I think it’s important to point out how critical she has been to this entire process.

Matt Hyatt (00:52:52):

This is not just Matt Hyatt, running a business. This is Matt supported by Maureen to make things happen. And there’s been an extraordinary amount of patience and support in that. Because it, you know, we shared with you a tiny, tiny glimpse into the effort required to get a business off the ground and get it running and all of that in the through the lens of the growth and maturity of it’s CEO. And so it would not have been possible at all for me to build this business without Maureen by my side. And and I think that was a really important people know that if you are lucky enough to have a partner in life and the two of you can combine your talents and capabilities and personalities to kind of push in the same direction and be for the same things, it’s amazing what can be accomplished.

Matt Hyatt (00:53:55):

Certainly that’s part of the story here. I also think it’s important to people know that you know, it’s, it will, I gave up on perfection a long time ago. Nah, I pursue excellence instead. And I’m okay with us from time to time falling short of that goal. If, if we had arrived at that goal. And I don’t think you can arrive at, ah, you know, getting better, right. If your goal is to get better, there’s always a little room. I don’t think you reach perfection, but I think you can pursue improvement. Yeah. Yeah. You know, I want people to know that we still have challenges in our business. We still have people issues in our business that we have to work through. I still make mistakes. My team still makes mistakes. I think we are a really great business and I think we do a good job, but I also don’t want people to think that it’s perfect.

Matt Hyatt (00:54:47):

It’s not, it’s excellent. And I think it will get excellent-er with time.

Dan Frey (00:54:51):

Well said. So let’s close it out with thoughts then, like what would be one person in your life that’s really had a profound impact on you? Maybe you just told us.

Matt Hyatt (00:55:02):

Well, that’s the easy answer, right? I hope we get to both answer this question because I want to go beyond Maureen because I’ve already talked about her and you know, she’s a key part of this story, but I do want to shed light on a, a friend of mine. His name is Gordon Fuller. Gordon was the guy that hired me at that little computer company when I moved to Georgia. He you know, at that time probably 22 or so.He had the confidence and faith in me, to kind of take a chance on a guy that had really very little experience and just shown up on his doorstep, looking for a job and,utook me under his wing.

Matt Hyatt (00:55:45):

And when he learned that that, you know, I was here in Atlanta and didn’t have any friends or family here yet. He really leaned into me. And he brought me into his family and introduced me to his wife and his kids. He got me into church, took me to the gym and he was a, just a terrific mentor. He was a guy that he was always, I could tell. It was just for me. He wanted to see me succeed and he invested his time and talent into me, and that made a huge difference in my life. Yeah. Gordon is still a friend today. We celebrated, as you mentioned earlier, celebrated 25 years this year. And so we had a big open house here at our offices in Suwanee and Gordon was there. With,uwith his adult daughter and, and her little kid come into our open house. And how cool is that? A part of our life, you know, all these years. But he made a huge difference in my life and I’ll forever be grateful to him for that.

Dan Frey (00:56:50):

I love it. That’s great.

Matt Hyatt (00:56:50):

So, Maureen, I want to hear who’s your person.

Maureen Hyatt (00:56:54):

Well, we’ve talked about this, not even too terribly long ago.

Matt Hyatt (00:56:58):

I’m a forgetful dude.

Maureen Hyatt (00:57:02):

Well, but it was kind of a fluid conversation. I think probably I would have to say going back to a boss I had back in Florida when I had my first career job in ophthalmology in Tampa. And one of the doctors I worked very closely with his name was Raymond Seaver. And it was just having somebody who was just so interested in how you were progressing with your career, with your personal life and just so supportive. And, you know, my parents were supportive. Like parents are always worried about something and they kind of try and push you in certain directions. And maybe you don’t want to go that way. But to have somebody who was just a hundred percent for me and being encouraging, and he was someone who was adventurous and he was all about new experiences and trying new things.

Maureen Hyatt (00:58:01):

And sometimes I just go sit in his office and we just have a little chit chat. And he’d be talking about all these different things he’s doing. He got me working out, just, just do it all kinds of things and encouraging my furthering my education in ophthalmology. Which ultimately led me to Emory here in Atlanta when I moved up here. So I think he was early on. He was huge, but I just want to sidestep, cause there was a book that I read and it’s, it’s kind of a funny book because it’s, it’s almost childlike, but it’s called “When Do the Good Things Start?” And that was a huge awakening for me because it was about, you’re not happy. You’re, you’re not satisfied in what you’re doing. What are you waiting for? It’s not going to come to you. It’s not going to happen to you.

Maureen Hyatt (00:58:52):

You have got to be proactive and go after with what you want, what your goals are. And that was huge for me because just reading that book and it’s a funny book because it’s, it, it bases everything on the Peanuts characters. There’s a lot of cartoons in this book, but I’ve given it to several friends because it’s, it’s very easy read, but it kind of pairs the personalities of the characters in that book and how they, their personality types respond to certain things. But that book made me realize that I was just kind of treading water and I needed to actually make something happen. And that changed everything to me for me because I moved out of my parents’ house, got me a place, got my big job, and eventually led me to my dream job at Emory here in Atlanta in 1992. So um, just things like that.

Maureen Hyatt (00:59:49):

And, and I love reading. One book that Matt and I read early on was “The Millionaire Next Door”. It’s huge for us. And that really helped us out a lot too, in the years of when finances were really tough in the early on and I’ll tell you what if, when you’re in that situation and as an entrepreneur and as a stay at home mom, and you just, you know, all the money you make is just funnels right back into the business. You just think goes into the business. It’s just, you can always squeeze a little bit tighter and we had to do that over and over again. When you think, look, we are bare bones here. There’s somewhere you can just squeeze a little bit tighter when you have to. It, it just, it’s just more about figuring out what you have to do to kind of sustain for awhile until you can start building things up again. So there’s a lot of, you know, I’m sure all of us can point to a lot of things that influenced how we changed our lives in some way.

Dan Frey (01:00:53):

You’ve kind of, you guys have kind of taken that to heart, I think, cause you guys are pretty much have always remained debt free.

Matt Hyatt (01:00:58):

Well, not always.

Dan Frey (01:00:58):

You’ve strive to get back to, if you’ve had to go into the hole, that’s always remained the priority. If I remember correctly with you guys in running the business,

Maureen Hyatt (01:01:12):

You know, it’s a lot less fun to be in that hole. And we were, we were, we were deep in the hole.

Matt Hyatt (01:01:19):

Yeah. I was. I think it’s, yeah. I want to make sure that we’re clear there. We spent a lot of years in debt and now it’s spent a lot of years, not in debt. And so I’ve tried them both and I like not in debt.

Dan Frey (01:01:34):

Would you say that’s one of your bigger lessons then? That you guys have learned?

Maureen Hyatt (01:01:40):

It’s an uphill battle when you’re, I mean, we were, it was, it was very rough. I mean, there were times, you know, when you have a payroll, when you have people working for you and you are, I mean, Matt doesn’t mind me saying it. We’re, we’re pretty transparent about it, but they would be the end of the week. And this is how much money came in and what do we absolutely have to put in our checking account so that we can pay the bills and feed the family for a week. And that is exactly how much we would put in our checking account because everything else went to the business. And there were times where I was running to the bank at 4:45 PM because we needed to make payroll and we had to drain all of our savings or take out a huge cash advance on my credit card just to pay our people. And we’re still like, okay, that leaves us a hundred bucks for the week. But it, it was rough, but this feels better.

Matt Hyatt (01:02:38):

So it is important. I don’t think all debt is bad. I think that debt can be good. I think it’s, you know, it’s very important to handle all debt or good or bad responsibly. And I have, you know, Maureen said earlier that there’s there’s good debt and bad debt, right? And so I think essentially a good, good debt is funds, things that are going to make you money or are going to allow you to carry out a vision for something that produces. Whether it produces income or cash flow or revenue or, or something good in the world. Right?

Matt Hyatt (01:03:22):

I think that there are things like that where it’s worth having debt and paying interest on that debt. You know, this building that we’re sitting on and right now is an investment and it’s financed in part with debt. And I think that’s a, that’s a good, positive, healthy thing. A bad debt comes from borrowing money to pay for things that you want and don’t need. And that’s where that comes from. And so, you know, I think the, there were a lot of years early, early on where most of my debt was created by stuff that I wanted and didn’t need. And then there were a lot of years in the middle where you know, we’re getting the business off the ground and supporting the family where it was debt that we needed in order to make the business run.

Matt Hyatt (01:04:08):

And I’m so glad that we we’re able to get through that and pay for it. And it was not cheap and it was not Stress-less, but I think it’s, you know, in retrospect, thank goodness we did it because we wouldn’t be here if we didn’t.

Maureen Hyatt (01:04:23):

There was so much education in that and so much growth. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. It was very uncomfortable but man, we learned so many lessons. We learned so much that it’s helped us get to this point where we are now.

Matt Hyatt (01:04:42):

So once, once you kind of get through that you know, startup phase of really kind of getting the business off the ground and you have something that’s running, I think it’s really important to ditch the debt and replace that with cash in the bank. So the extent that you can get there and you’ve got a cash flowing business and money in the bank and you’re not burdened by debt anymore. That really is the fuel that you can use to to continue to grow the business and do that and still sleep comfortably at night. And so I wouldn’t say that we’ve always been debt adverse. I’m still not completely debt averse, but I am very much averse to debt created by things that you want. I don’t want to borrow money for things that I want. I want to borrow money for things that create value and things that I need.

Dan Frey (01:05:36):

That’s gold. Well, guys, I gotta tell ya. I mean, you know, me, I got a business as well, and I have very thoroughly enjoyed this experience this morning because you know, while many listeners out there might think, well, this is a guy that knows them and is just gonna follow the script. I have been part of the listening audience. I am the first listener to this podcast because I’m taking a lot of what I heard today to heart. And I’m sure a lot of your listeners out there have as well. So I wanna, I want to thank you guys for this honor to, to have been able to fill in as the guest host and listen to all of these golden nuggets. I want to say to all your listeners out there, if you have any suggestions on future topics, or you would want to hear more about the Hyatts’ experience, email them at podcast@rocketit.com, and in the meantime, to learn more about Rocket IT and it’s services, just visit rocketit.com. Because I will tell you the more you get to know about Rocket IT, the more you will see that what you’ve heard on this podcast has lived out in that business. And I think that is a really cool thing. So guys, I really do once again, want to thank you. And I can’t wait to hear this out there online.

Matt Hyatt (01:06:50):

Thank you, Dan. We really appreciate you coming in here. Kind of taken over the host microphone and you’ve done a great job. I see already that I’m not really needed in this anymore. You’ve got it if you want to keep running with it, a great job. So thanks. Thank you Dan.

Dan Frey (01:07:11):

It’s my pleasure. It was a blast. Thank you guys.

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