While training for the 1996 Olympics, Steve West searched for business alternatives that allowed him the freedom to perfect his swimming techniques. His solution: Metafuse, a company that has become a leading Web-based project- management, software- solution provider. Additionally, Metafuse is the only project management company to be named a Microsoft Certified Partner and Developer.
The most important lesson learned: I learned that it takes much more than just a great idea to build a product and company from scratch. Determination, focus and patience are critical, because it takes time to find the right team, build a great product and establish a loyal customer base for your company.
Your next big step: For our company, it will be important to significantly grow our market share over the next few years. Many companies are still using spreadsheets and/or a combination of desktop software tools to manage their projects, rather than use a comprehensive Web-based project-management software tool like Project Insight. Ultimately, we’ll need to increase the awareness level of how important collaborative Web-based project-management software is to the success of nearly all businesses.
Advice for other young professionals: If you have a great idea that you believe in wholeheartedly, then by all means chart your course and set sail, so to speak. Plan carefully and execute your plan with determination, but be prepared for the unexpected, and be ready to adapt your plan when necessary. If you believe in yourself, you can succeed in fulfilling your vision.
What you do for fun: I love surfing and swimming, and participating in any aquatic-oriented sport or activity.
If you could have dinner with anyone – alive or dead – who would it be and why? I would have dinner with Benjamin Franklin, because I’d want him to teach me more about his remarkable inventive intellect and his persuasive leadership abilities.