236: Brandon Bruce: Sustainable Growth In A Startup Environment
Release Date: 02/06/2019
How do you build a successful startup and not get caught in the “growth at all costs” mindset?
Brandon Bruce grew up in a tiny California town of 800 people where he only had one classmate at school and an outhouse for their bathroom. These humble beginnings set the stage for Brandon’s curiosity to thrive as he was afforded the freedom to learn at his own pace. Demonstrating community involvement and support of his interests, Brandon’s parents taught him through example that you can take care of business and take care of your family and community at the same time.
Brandon is now co-founder of Cirrus Insight which has grown to $12 million in revenue and is listed as #41 on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing companies. Located in Knoxville, Tennessee, Cirrus Insight also organized and sponsored the largest computer coding lesson in the world, with nearly 10,000 students and over 50 schools participating, landing them in the Guinness Book Of World Records.
In today’s conversation, Brandon shares his lessons from bootstrapping a startup company, growing a team, and pivoting when their main marketing channel was eliminated. Building solid customer relationships has been essential for their tech startup, and Brandon describes how they were able to avoid common pitfalls to growth by engaging their customers every step of the way.
We round out this interview with Brandon sharing a few examples of the ways in which he has been able support his local community, including simple, easy projects anyone can do, as well as leveraging Cirrus Insight’s expertise by leading the largest computer coding lesson in the world. His example proves that making an impact doesn’t require you to register a NPO or corporate entity – it simply requires you to be open to the needs of your community and be willing to take action.
- Before you build a product, find out from potential customers if they would use it and how much would they pay to use it.
- Back your marketing and distribution channels with relationships.
- A lot of life is just showing up.
- Many entrepreneurs never get their idea off the ground because they get stuck in the planning phase.
- Do not over-plan – complete a project and then if it’s successful and you want to continue, then consider writing a business plan, setting up an entity, and so forth.
- It’s underrated how much can be created with a project.
- No permission is needed to make a difference in your community. Just do it.
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