1/5/2009 – Best and worst day

The best and worst day of my professional life.

I just didn’t know it yet.

We were in the middle of The Great Recession.

I inherited an inexperienced team.

I was working with a skeptical CEO.

We lost ~1000 customers that first week.

It was my first official day as GM, a role with sizable gaps in my skills and experience. Before noon on that fateful day we suffered a near complete infrastructure collapse.

We were an email hosting company that was unable to deliver email with any consistency. Despite a heroic effort from many on the team, this nightmare went on for two and half days. Until midday on January 7th, our users were unable to reliably access, send, or receive email as our hobbled technology tried to keep up with demand.

Some waited hours.

They were abundant in sharing their displeasure. One incensed gentleman I spoke with threatened to flood our support team with calls to shut us down. My team was barraged with similarly angry calls that went on for weeks.

We were in trouble. I was in trouble!

I/we had to do something…

Read the whole story and more in my book, Further, Faster (free pdf!)

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