Two years ago today we got an email from some guy with the subject “I’m your guy!”
We were hiring for our first engineer to join Dan as we built HomeField and this was the first hit we got from a blog post and some tweets about the job.
On paper, this guy looked pretty good. Built a couple apps, PhD in physics, college rower… but he also wasn’t a native coder or startup guy… regardless, we started ‘dating’…
The first contact we had was when he and Dan attended a NY Tech Talk. It was meant to vet him technically. Instead, Dan and him talked at length about how their wives are both teachers, they both like the Mets and craft beers. SWOOON!
So he was a fit culturally, but what about technically? We had to test that, so who better to vet him technically than me, the non-technical founder/ceo, right? <sarcasm>
I met with him and asked him to explain technical issues simply and he did. Dan liked working with him, so we put him through a month long tryout. He even agreed to come up to my parent’s house on Cape Cod for a week with the team before joining full time.
If you know my team, you already know I’m talking about Henry and my point in retelling this story is that he joined HomeField at a time when we were still figuring things out [in particular, our hiring process]. He worked without salary. He made it through TechStars with us. He stayed with us in our switch to Shelby…
I couldn’t be more grateful for that loyalty and dedication… that attitude of 'doing whatever needs to get done’ and belief in the team goes such a long way in forging relationships and a strong team.
The line you hear is that “startups are like rollercoasters” and it is true. Rarely do early stage/first time founders have everything figured out. As an early hire, you have to be ready to throw yourself to the fire and deal with whatever comes your way. Henry’s done just that and it’s part of what makes working with this team so special.
Thanks for being our guy, Henry.
In closing, I thought I’d share this video I shot in fall of 2010, in which Henry nearly loses his shit as we assess some of the software our HomeField customers used on a daily basis. Laughs ensue…