When I started Lumagate in 2006, it was because I saw a great opportunity in the marketplace. No one was looking to be the best player in Microsoft technology for system management. It’s a niche, focused, industry—but I knew we could do it.
From the beginning, I wanted to create a big company but I always focused on the day-to-day work of the business. I was constantly stuck in customer projects, which made it even more frustrating that I couldn’t realize my wish to expand. As I read and listened to the EMyth books, I knew it was time to stop reading and start implementing what I was learning. I was the limitation in the company and I knew I needed a coach.
EMyth Coaching was a positive experience right from the start. We did a lot of work, everything from Leadership to Finance, but the one thing that really stood out for me was the work we did on our vision. When I finalized our strategic vision, I had painted it quite well. I knew where we wanted to be, how we were going to do things, and where we were going to get started. It was through my vision for the company that I was able to recruit a strong CEO for our Norway offices. During this time, my days started to look a lot different—less time spent on the phone with customers and more time focusing on building our services.
Ulf realized early in the coaching process that he much preferred being the go-to guy, found it difficult to delegate, and was uncomfortable in the strategic leadership role his company so badly needed. It’s been my pleasure to watch Ulf become more and more comfortable in his role as the leader of his world class company. Rich Heidecker
However, it’s hard for me to focus my time on a strategic level because I take on more tasks than I should. Delegation is something I still struggle with because I’m too impatient and take shortcuts. It’s quicker for me to do it myself in a few minutes rather than train someone for a few hours. I’m working to involve more and more people from different departments, and I’m starting to see the difference it makes to bring in your team.
My marketing manager is now involved in some of our calls with Rich. We’re working through our materials again and my manager is moving into a more strategic level position. It’s empowering for her—and for me—to look at the bigger picture and see why we do our marketing and what it looks like when it’s finished. If I had to start coaching over again, I would involve my team more from the beginning. I did a lot of the thinking and work by myself but my employees could’ve helped by giving me insight into their struggles. They could have helped me put some pieces of the puzzle together.
When I think about the last four years, I’m amazed at what we’ve done. When we started coaching, we had eight employees. Now we have somewhere close to sixty-three and we’ve expanded to three countries (Sweden, Denmark, Norway). We have a well recognized brand in Europe that’s known for being the best in system management. In 2015, we won the Best Partner Award from Microsoft in each country we’re operating in! We’re working to expand to Finland and will have 110 employees by 2018. It’s a bold goal, but I think we can do it.
Ulf has created a powerful organizational strategy with clear accountabilities that is geared for growth throughout the region resulting in his employees feeling more empowered and free to be the best they can be. Truly EMyth in action. Rich Heidecker
I’m evolving and moving to become a better leader and entrepreneur. It’s the best thing and I don’t think I would change anything else. I’m doing this to improve myself, that’s my main objective, to get better. Just being able to talk with Rich—and having him pick me up 10,000 feet to look down at the entire company—is so valuable. It’s worth staying in the program just to have those conversations.