I recently had the honor of speaking at the Transitions East Conference in Tampa, FL, put on by Family Business Magazine and Stetson University. I didn’t know what to expect as it was my first time attending such a conference. Nearly 300 attendees were treated to an agenda that was informative, honest, and inspiring.
The show was littered with speakers and attendees from Bush Beans (Jay Bush of Jay & Duke fame), Brown-Forman (Jack Daniels, Finlandia), the CEO of Just Born and Candy Hall-of-Famer Ross Born (Mike & Ikes, Peeps), and Wendy Yuengling Baker (Yuengling, America’s oldest brewery). The list went on and on. Everywhere you turned, an iconic family enterprise like Publix, Meijer, Luck Companies, and the Harlem Globetrotters said hello.
It was awesome networking as these people were filled with pride and commitment to their work.
I had the privilege of telling the story of the York family enterprise (outlined here and here) and being part of three generations that built and are building careers in our home state of New Hampshire.
Being one of five brothers and the middle child, it’s always been about creating impact, legacy, and a long-lasting family enterprise brand. It’s also always been about being the glue and looking out for others. We were all raised with a family first attitude, closely followed by a spirit of giving back to the community.
I also talked deeply about the passion and energy I bring to my job leading our foundational company of Dyn, and how we’ve become a transformative technology business in our home state, influencing the way the Internet performs (ever use Netflix, CNN, or Seeking Alpha?). The room was mind-boggled by the technology.
I talked about integrating innovation and technology into the new age business and how the millennial generation identifies with transparent, unwavering, accessible brands. I shook up the traditional mindset of the family enterprise and brought an entrepreneurial vigor to the conference that really made the audience think deeply about how to ensure they were relevant and sustainable for the next generation.
At Dyn, we treat all of our stakeholders like family. Every business should. We take culture, brand, and customer experience very seriously. We want our employees and their families to feel like they are part of a bigger family, making waves in our community and in the broader Internet community.
We treat our customers and partners with the utmost respect. The best companies put customers and employees first, and then shareholders. I always say that people work with people they like and stick with companies they trust.
I leave you with a quote shared by fellow speaker Wanda Ortwine, Chief Family Officer of The Luck Companies:
“Do right by your people and they’ll do right by you.” — Charles Luck Jr.