Welcome To The Minnesota Headhunter Blog


Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minnesota IT Jobs


This is a “what’s going on” here at Minnesota Headhunter. Blog posts of interest, event announcements, Minnesota IT Jobs I am recruiting for and recruiting, startup and job search advice.

BIG NEWS… announcing =>

Speaking Events:

Attending Events:

Blog Posts (recent/popular) or scroll down:


Have a question, comment or looking for some information? Send an email to paul@mnheadhunter.com


    Minnesota Tech Jobs



    Minnesota IT Jobs

    The following have been added to the page…

    Friends who are hiring:


    Also… click => “Say Hello” and take a moment and fill out this Google Form so I know who you are. You can tell me as much or as little about yourself as you want to including if you have a favorite blog to read or podcast to listen to.


    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    Minnesota Morning: HomeSpotter Expands, More On The Code42 Layoff/Reorg, Google Data Center And What’s Next For Minnesota Headhunter Part I



    I didn’t get much sleep this week. And I’ve already been restless the past two weeks and did not know why until a conversation with a friend at the Enterprise Rising Happy Hour and another this morning. Let’s say… I was challenged. There are a lot of things I want to do and rather than do them, try it, test it… I over think it (them) and days become weeks become months become (sometimes) never. Or some over thought idea that I squeezed the fun out of and now is not as cool as it could have been.

    Enough of that failed strategy Smile

    Do you remember the Diet Coke and Mentos videos from a decade ago? That’s how I feel. And I am going to go with it.

    More on that below…

    Here is a photo from the Enterprise Rising Happy Hour:

    19-1 Enterprise Rising Happy Hour

    Save the date for the next Enterprise Rising Conference May 8th & 9th 2019.


    HomeSpotter Expands

    Good news from HomeSpotter yesterday… they announced their first acquisition, Spacio, HQ’d in Vancouver and the addition of Dug Nichols (@dugnichols) to the team => HomeSpotter makes first acquisition, hires former Kidizen CEO (MSP Business Journal). I’ve been a long time fan of Aaron Kardell (@akardell) , CEO. We worked together a few times between 2012 and 2015 as Aaron was growing the team. He is one of the best people, personally and professionally, I’ve been around. I am assuming prepping for the announcement the HomeSpotter web site has had a refresh. Click HomeSpotter Careers… they are hiring.

    Continue reading "Minnesota Morning: HomeSpotter Expands, More On The Code42 Layoff/Reorg, Google Data Center And What’s Next For Minnesota Headhunter Part I" »


    What The Code42 Layoff And Restructure Means For The Minnesota Tech Community



    Change Ahead

    I’ve been a bit surprised at the surprised response from some in the Minneapolis and St Paul tech community about the announced Code42 layoff and restructure. Some are worrying… wondering if it’s a “sign”.

    I get that Code42 is one of our most high-profile tech companies. I get that they are the most likely talked about company to have an IPO.

    And for the 55 people who have been impacted by this… this is a huge thing for them and we all need to help them find a soft landing, fast.

    But what does it mean for the MN tech scene in general?

    My opinion… nothing.

    That’s right… absolutely nothing.

    Here is the statement from Joe Payne, CEO:

    “Code42’s evolution into a data security company has seen us advance our offering from IT infrastructure products to application security products. Now we are making some organizational changes to realign our resources around how we sell, deploy and support these new products in the market. These changes reflect shifts in our market and in the needs of our customers. They are not a reflection on the talented people whose positions were affected,” said Joe Payne, Code42’s president and CEO. “In 2018, we grew to approximately $115 million in annual recurring revenue. The steps we are taking today are focused on further accelerating our growth. With more than $30 million in cash and the backing of some of the world’s best investors, Code42 has the financial resources we need to win in the data loss protection market.”

    And this from the StarTribune, Minneapolis-based Code42 to lay off 55 workers as growth slows

    Code42 is like most companies, they are learning and evolving. They are trying new products. They are making decisions on which way to go.

    With that comes change and that change at times will impact people. That part sucks. The impact on people. But I have a newsflash… this is normal.

    Continue reading "What The Code42 Layoff And Restructure Means For The Minnesota Tech Community" »


    2019 Minnesota Jobs Prediction



    Roller Coaster

    I tend to stay away from making predictions… I don’t have a crystal ball that tells the future. If I did I likely would not be writing this post right now. When I was a kid I did have a Magic 8 Ball. Those were the best. Didn’t like your answer? Try again. Or do 2 of 3 or 4 of 7.

    But I do trends.

    I am always reading economic surveys, watching CNBC and Bloomberg, reading company quarterly reports, scanning Glassdoor company reviews, looking at Indeed and Google Jobs. Anything that when combined with other bits of data show trends. Sometimes new data jives with what I have been thinking and other times it shows some change.

    Late 2017 while prepping for our end of the year MSP On Deck Podcast we each were going to make a prediction. I knew mine right away.

    I went with this… that in 2018 the Minnesota jobs scene and particularly the Minnesota tech jobs scene was going to see greater churn. By churn I meant that we would see more companies hiring, more companies laying off and restructuring and for a variety of factors more people taking a look at what might be available to them in a new job, career or employer.

    While I can’t point to a particular survey or chart… I am claiming a win on that prediction.

    If you ask corporate and search firm recruiters… most experienced a busier year of recruiting. If you ask managers, directors and those who run teams if they had a harder time retaining people… most will say yes.

    Remember the gopher from CaddyShack and how he would stick his head up from underground to see what was going on outside? That’s what a lot more people did in 2018. They all didn’t move but more were willing to take a look.

    Now to my 2019 Minnesota Jobs prediction… I’m not taking a big leap with this one.

    I am predicting even more churn in 2019.


    Continue reading "2019 Minnesota Jobs Prediction" »


    Synapse Podcast With Steve LeBeau, Louis King, Casey Allen And I Talking About Economic Development, Job Creation And Minnesota Startups



    Synapse Podcast with Steve LeBeau, Louis King, Casey Allen and Paul DeBettignies

    It all started with Casey Allen sending me an email:

    “do you want to be on a podcast with me?”

    And a link to Steve LeBeau’s podcast “Synapse: Think Tank Of The Air”

    While I had not previously met Steve (@splebeau), I knew who he was. At one time he was the Editor in Chief of Minnesota Business and at other times a writer, producer, editor for TV, radio, print and the web. His current passion is Synapse:

    “The Social Mission of Synapse is to Connect Diverse Twin Cities Influencers and pick their brains for the Greater Good”

    “Heck yeah” was my reply.

    Casey follows up by saying there is a 3rd guest who I had also heard of but never met. Louis King is the CEO of Summit Academy OIC:

    “We exist to assist individuals in developing their ability to earn and to become contributing citizens in their community. Our fundamental belief is: the best social service program in the world is a job”

    I told Casey:

    “We might be in over our heads… these are some smart fellas”

    As Casey and I are walking in the elevator to the studio we meet Louis. It took maybe 3 minutes for us to be quick friends. We’re already talking about jobs, the economy and stuff when Steve comes out and asks us to stop talking. He wanted to be able to record our chat.

    What follows is a summary of our conversation and at the bottom you can hear the whole conversation.

    Continue reading "Synapse Podcast With Steve LeBeau, Louis King, Casey Allen And I Talking About Economic Development, Job Creation And Minnesota Startups" »


    Minneapolis And St Paul Tech Jobs



    Minnesota IT Jobs

    The following have been added to the Minnesota IT Jobs page…

    Friends who are hiring:


    Also… click => “Say Hello” and take a moment and fill out this Google Form so I know who you are. You can tell me as much or as little about yourself as you want to including if you have a favorite blog to read or podcast to listen to.

     

    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.

     

    Stay in touch with me by clicking:

     

    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:

     


    Minneapolis And St Paul Recruiter Jobs



    Recruiter Jobs


    The following have been added to the page by Minneapolis and St Paul employers and click for the latest trends in Minnesota Recruiter hiring:


    How to post a job (it’s free)?

    Send the content (preferably in Word) along with a link or email for folks to apply to paul@mnheadhunter.com

    And check out Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp for recruiting and hiring manager conferences and conversations about recruiting in and to Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota and the Midwest:

    Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp


    If you are using a RSS Feed click
    Minnesota Recruiter Jobs.

    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT searches I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    MSP On Deck Podcast #27: Patrick Meenan From Arthur Ventures Joins Us, Top Tech Stories of 2018 And 2019 Predictions



    MSP On Deck Logo

    Our last episode of 2018 is with a guest and one of my favorite people in the Minnesota tech scene… Patrick Meenan (@pmeenan1), Partner with Arthur Ventures (@arthurventures).

    We jump right in with who Patrick is and get history of Arthur Ventures. He talks about the investments they have made in 2018 and spends some time talking about investments to date in Minneapolis totaling 7 companies and $25M.

    We also talk about:

    • When should someone contact him about funding
    • Their investment strategy
    • Why they invest anywhere but the Bay Area
    • How they find companies to invest in
    • What are the differences in the cities in which they have invested
    • Their recent investment in Nomics
    • What 2019 looks like for Arthur Ventures
    • What companies did they not invest in they wish they would/could have
    • Scaling recruiting, retention of staff and executive recruiting
    • Why a recruiting hire should be around 20-30 people. HR leadership around 50-60 people
    • How the Minneapolis and St Paul tech scene is doing

    We transition to top business stories from MSP Business Journal in 2018 including Bite Squad, Bright Health, Bind, Total Expert, Flip Grid and Reeher.

    We talk about leading rounds, being on a board, when/why companies disclose purchase prices (or not) and what happens post acquisition.

    We spend some time talking about IPO’s and private equity acquisitions.

    Continue reading "MSP On Deck Podcast #27: Patrick Meenan From Arthur Ventures Joins Us, Top Tech Stories of 2018 And 2019 Predictions" »


    Minnesota #8 On Tech And Science Index


    18 Milken Institute State Tech and Science Index Map

    If you’ve stopped by here a few times you are aware that I love a good survey, ranking or index. It’s why I like sports… every day you can look in a newspaper or online and find out if your team is winning, losing, where it ranks and how it is trending.

    In this case my team is Minnesota and I like to gauge how we are doing, trending and comparing.

    The Milken Institute released their 2018 State Technology and Science Index, something they do every 2 years, and it always has a lot of data to look at.

    For 2018 Minnesota ranks #8, -1 from 2016.

    From the report:

    Minnesota drops one spot to end up eighth on the 2018 STSI. After a strong performance in 2016, Minnesota’s score decreased by 6.47 points to 63.11. The state dropped two places on the RDI to land at 21st. Minnesota also ranks 21st on the RCI in this edition of the STSI, a five-rank drop from 2016. Minnesota increased one rank on the HCI to fourth, while the state dropped to seventh from fourth on the TSW sub-index due to decreases in the concentration of computer, engineering, and science-related occupations. Minnesota dropped three ranks to 18th on the TCD.

    The state has been focusing on creating a workforce to support the growing high-tech sector. The statewide College Occupational Scholarship Pilot Program for STEM-related degrees is one such program, and in conjunction, Minnesota has built eight IT Center of Excellence facilities to focus resources on education and internship programs. These eight centers provide a pathway for entering the high-tech workforce, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, expanding the high-tech workforce through diversity recruitment, and providing K-12 grades with a tech-related curriculum.

    Minnesota is also making efforts to expand access to broadband internet. Currently, Minnesota has 69 percent of households with broadband internet, ranking 19th in the nation. One estimate puts a $1.4 billion price on the infrastructure needed to connect the remaining 31 percent of households in the state. If Minnesota can provide statewide high-speed internet access, this could generate long-term economic benefits by connecting its population to opportunity through modern infrastructure development. By providing the necessary education, workforce, and infrastructure as the knowledge economy develops, Minnesota should be competitive in the long run.

    Overall Minnesota ranking by year:

    • #8 2018
    • #7 2016
    • #13 2014
    • #12 2012
    • #12 2010
    • #11 2008
    • #8 2004
    • #10 2002


    Continue reading "Minnesota #8 On Tech And Science Index" »


    Conversation With A Startup Founder: I Need Help With The Non Recruiting Activities Of Recruiting



    Recruiting

    A couple of months ago during Twin Cities Startup Week I had a chat with a with a Startup Founder who was telling me about how they were having an easy time with recruiting. And I was not surprised. The group has a strong set of leaders who are well known and respected. They each have a good to great network of tech friends in town. And they had been active in saying they were hiring.

    I had a conversation with the same person New Year’s Eve Day and they are… stressed out. Things are not going well.

    I asked if I could take some notes to write for a blog post and they said yes.

    Here are some issues they have been facing:

    • Process: they don’t have one. Each candidate experience has essentially turned into a choose your own adventure book. And at times has had everyone feeling confused.

    • Time: they don’t have it and they’re wasting it. Interview cycles were 3 weeks and that was before the holidays started. They are losing people because they are taking offers at other places or becoming disinterested.

    • Negotiation: they suck at it. They generally are not talking about their own salary range or what candidate expectations are until they are ready to extend the offer. Two times they found themselves $10K+ apart. Other times they went way outside their budget. They are not communicating why someone should work there beyond salary. An offer should be a win-win for both parties.

    • Brand: they are beginning to hurt their own reputations. They are not getting back to people in a timely manner and they are not “rejecting” people in a respectful way.

    • Candidate pool: is good to really good. But it’s not great. They are not finding people outside of their network so candidates tend to have the same experience and work/worked at the same places. Their pool tends to lack diversity of thought, experience, gender and age.

    Here are the highlights of the advice I gave:

    • Create a process that is easy to manage and the same for everyone. Exceptions to the process are just that and not the norm.

    • Time is never your friend when it comes to recruiting. It must be a priority. I get you are busy building a company, speaking with VC’s and tending to day to day operations. But this can’t be an after thought.

    • Negotiations are always tricky… my advice to both “sides” is to be transparent from the start.

    • You have to treat people better than the way you want to be treated. We live in a really large, small town. More than that, it’s the right thing to do.

    • Having a strong network is awesome… but you can’t just fish from the same place every time. You need to go to other places, meet new people and grow who you know.

    Back to the title of this post… the Founder said to me they need help with the “non-recruiting activities of recruiting”.

    Their problem is that they thought recruiting is just the act of finding people or in their case… people finding them.

    What they really need is a recruiting strategy that is reliable, sustainable and scalable.

    If you are a startup founder, CTO, etc. and want to chat about recruiting and related topics… send me an email. I love these kinds of conversations.


    Click for current blog posts and for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


      

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    Minneapolis And St Paul Recruiter Jobs



    Recruiter Jobs

     

    The following have been added to the Minnesota Recruiter Jobs page by Minneapolis and St Paul employers and click Minnesota Recruiters In Demand – Fall 2018 for the latest trends in Minnesota Recruiter hiring:


    How to post a job (it’s free)?

    Send the content (preferably in Word) along with a link or email for folks to apply to paul@mnheadhunter.com

    And check out Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp for recruiting and hiring manager conferences and conversations about recruiting in and to Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota and the Midwest:

    Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp


    If you are using a RSS Feed click
    Minnesota Recruiter Jobs.

    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT searches I am working on.

     

    Stay in touch with me by clicking:

     

    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:

     


    Minneapolis And St Paul Recruiter Jobs



    Recruiter Jobs


    The following have been added to the page by Minneapolis and St Paul employers and click for the latest trends in Minnesota Recruiter hiring:


    How to post a job (it’s free)?

    Send the content (preferably in Word) along with a link or email for folks to apply to paul@mnheadhunter.com

    And check out Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp for recruiting and hiring manager conferences and conversations about recruiting in and to Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota and the Midwest:

    Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp


    If you are using a RSS Feed click
    Minnesota Recruiter Jobs.

    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT searches I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    Coding Bootcamp Job Search Tip #1: Do Not Call Yourself An Entry Level Developer



    Entry Level Developer

    I am starting a series of job search advice tips focusing on soon to be and recent coding bootcamp graduates. This first one may be the most important one…

    Raise your right hand and repeat after me:

    “I will never, ever, not once and surely never again call myself an Entry Level Developer”

    Just don’t. Please. I am begging.

    If you went through an intensive program of any kind be it in person, online or self taught, spent many weeks/months doing it and can write code that is useable… you are not an Entry Level Developer.

    I want you to use titles like these:

    • Junior Developer

    • Associate Developer

    • Software Developer

    The connotation of “entry level” is HUGE and using it any way absolutely does not help you:

    • Likely increases odds of you being passed over for a role

    • Likely leads people to believe you do not know anything

    • Likely gives a rationale to pay you less.

    So why would use Entry Level Developer?

    And now you won’t… because you just swore an oath you wouldn’t.


    Click for current blog posts and for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


      

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    MSP On Deck Podcast #26: Bright Health And Dispatch Funding, Sezzle Line Of Credit, Writing A Startup Press Release, Minnesota Accelerators And Minnesota Tech Gift Ideas



    MSP On Deck Podcast

    After a weird tangent about 7-Eleven and software… we get started.

    Bright Health picked up a $200M round of funding and Pitch Book now values them at $950M. I ask about “Unicorn” status and if that helps or hurts. Casey explains why and why not and the difference between the Bay Area and the Midwest. Casey also talks about the Bright Health leadership team, their competition and what a potential outcome might be.

    Sezzle announced a $100M line of credit, not to be confused with a round of funding. Casey walks us through what Sezzle is and does. And how what is Sezzle now is not what it started as.

    That gets me a startup question… what is the percentage of startups that make a pivot or fundamental change in the business.

    Dispatch raised a Series A of $7.8M and I talk about the cofounders, what they do, recruiting plan, and the recent hire of a HR Director hire.

    Casey talks about raising money from customers.

    We have a sweet conversation about startup funding press releases, how to follow up with reporters, the mechanics of how it works, etc. If you’re announcing a round of finding this segment is highly valuable to you.

    Target changes their accelerator program away from TechStars and I ask if it is a step back. Clearly Casey agrees. We talk about what it means for the local tech scene.

    I learned Nordstrom is a player in the invest in and acquire startup space.

    Good news… a new accelerator is starting with Gener8tor, Allianz Life and Securian Financial called OnRamp Insurance Accelerator. And this one seems like a win.

    Casey show us more of his nerdy side by talking insurance and fintech.

    Continue reading "MSP On Deck Podcast #26: Bright Health And Dispatch Funding, Sezzle Line Of Credit, Writing A Startup Press Release, Minnesota Accelerators And Minnesota Tech Gift Ideas" »


    1 Way To Make An Extra $10,000 As A Contractor



    Raise your contractor rate

    Hey there Ms./Mr. Contractor/Consultant, 2019 is approaching and you’re likely planning your year. As a part of that you are thinking about projects, how many billable hours you are targeting, rates, taxes, expenses, etc.

    Here is one way to make an extra $10K next year…

    RAISE YUR RATE

    Step back for a moment and ask yourself this question, “When was the last time I raised my rate?”

    If it has been more than 24 months (I’m guessing for many of you it is more than that) let me ask you this question, “Are you the same contractor now, as then?”

    If the answer is yes then, well… keep your rate.

    If you are smarter, better, more efficient and have 2-3 more tools in your toolbelt since the last time you raised your rates… then do it.

    At least try.

    It’s that part that seems to be the barrier… you don’t ask. If you don’t ask, how do you know if it is possible?

    Do the following right now and make it look as sharp as possible:

    • Update your web site

    • Update your resume

    • Update your LinkedIn profile

    Continue reading "1 Way To Make An Extra $10,000 As A Contractor" »


    Tech Career Advice: Take Control Of Finding Your Next Job

    ctrlI am seeing a trend lately with the conversations I am having with tech pros… and I am not sure if it is because I have been attending more tech events and meetups so these conversations find me, if it is because many tech pros have hit a tipping point with their (dead end) conversations with recruiters or this is a natural progression in a long bull market economy (people are proactively doing a search)…

    Tech pros are starting to take control of where they land next.

    Conversations generally sound like this, “I usually wait for a search firm or corporate tech recruiter to reach out to me about a job and if the timing is right, I take a look at it. Now I am actively seeking out companies and roles I want and reaching out to them directly.”

    (applauding)

    YES!!! <= how I usually respond.

    I get that your busy writing code, managing a team, architecting the app, listening to end users, keeping the system running and keeping board members informed and happy.

    But to leave to chance that a corporate recruiter or search firm recruiter has your next dream job is freaking crazy.

    Should you pay attention to the inquiries?

    Absolutely.

    Should you rely on those being the only opportunities that are available to you?

    NO WAY.

    There are some easy ways to stay in touch with what is going on including:

    Take control.

    Click for current blog posts and for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


      

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    My Minnebar 2018 Presentation: Managing Your IT Career v10 (Why Recruiters Suck So Bad)



    Paul DeBettignies at Minnebar 13

    Minnestar sent out their email newsletter today and I saw after the Minnedemo 31 save the date for February 7 at Pantages Theater and the Minnebar 14 save the date for April 27th at Best Buy HQ’s… there is a note that Minnebar 13 session were posted in the past days and one of the videos in the image is mine.

    And I thought… oh (bleep), did I say anything stupid that was caught on the audio?

    So I am listening to it and taking notes for you here so you know ahead of time if this has some value to you. I’m talking about:

    • Why “Why Recruiters Suck So Bad” is in my session title. And no, I don’t think all recruiters suck. And I explain why some tech pros think we do

    • I do a quick intro of me and worked in that the “Badgers Suck”. I look forward to having a picture of Paul Bunyan’s Axe

    • Then clients who I was working with phData (Big Data consulting), Daugherty Business Solutions (IT Consultants) & Livefront (iOS & Android Dev’s and Designers)

    • My love for Prime Digital Academy

    • I mention the MSP on Deck podcast and CoCo now Fueled Collective

    • What the local job market is like and I use terms like funky, churn and weird

    • Why tech salaries seem stagnant

    • Why Midwest employers seem slow to hire Junior Dev’s

    • How to find potential employers that are not well known (and a what is going on in St Paul)

    Continue reading "My Minnebar 2018 Presentation: Managing Your IT Career v10 (Why Recruiters Suck So Bad)" »


    Minneapolis And St Paul Recruiter Jobs



    Recruiter Jobs


    The following have been added to the page by Minneapolis and St Paul employers:


    How to post a job (it’s free)?

    Send the content (preferably in Word) along with a link or email for folks to apply to paul@mnheadhunter.com

    And check out Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp for recruiting and hiring manager conferences and conversations about recruiting in and to Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota and the Midwest:

    Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp


    If you are using a RSS Feed click
    Minnesota Recruiter Jobs.

    Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT searches I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


    Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minneapolis Recruiter Minnesota Recruiter

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    Poll: Most Promising Minnesota Startup



    Minnesota Most Promising Startup

    The Minneapolis St Paul Business Journal has their annual poll open for voting => “What's the most promising Minnesota startup of 2018?”

    This year’s list:

    That’s a sweet list of groups and all of them are doing well. All of them are hiring with the exception of HabitAware… they will be doing it in 2019.

    Of course… after spending the past seven weeks with Dispatch I am cheering them on. Click and bookmark Dispatch Careers to see what they have going on.

    I’m also a fan of my friends at HabitAware, Foodsby and Sezzle.

    As is noted… “This poll is not a scientific sampling. It offers a quick view of what readers are thinking.”

    The poll is open until the 14th so if you have a moment cast one more vote this year… this time for the most promising Minnesota Startup.


    Click for current blog posts and for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.


    Stay in touch with me by clicking:


      

    Newsletter Sign Up
    Email:



    10 Minutes With Neal Tovsen, CTO, Consultant And Tech Community Supporter



    Neal Tovsen

    “10 Minutes With…” is a blog series where I get to promote old friends, friends of friends, new people I have met and those who are doing cool and interesting things in Minneapolis and St Paul, Minnesota and the Midwest. The title of the series originates from me being well known notorious for asking, “Hey, do you have 10 minutes for a quick call?” It’s never 10 minutes. It’s never a short call.

    This edition is with Neal Tovsen… he is a long time coder, advisor, entrepreneur and volunteer. We briefly bumped into each other at Minnedemo during Twin Cities Startup Week but didn’t get a chance to get fully caught up. I start with some background (for you) questions and then to what I was wondering about with what he is doing now, learning more about “Fractional CTO” and where he has been hanging out.

    What were your early days in technology like? Were you playing games, writing code?

    I’ve always been fascinated by technology. My mother was a software engineer, and she taught me how to program in BASIC on an Apple III when I was about seven years old. But though I played games on computers and consoles, I really wasn’t particularly interested in computers through high school.

    I went to Hamline University for physics and engineering, and I’d been using the early tools on the Internet for various things. But when the first Web browsers came out, I was hooked. I worked with the school to develop a new major around how people use technology, weaving elements of traditional computer science with things like mass/interpersonal communications, information technology, and other relevant majors. And the rest is history.

    Tell me about your career so far… where have you been and what have you worked on?

    The first dozen years or so of my career were in “enterprise” software engineering. I built software for companies like 3M, GE Power, Siemens, and other large corporations, both as an employee and as a consultant. My experience spans many industries, but much of what I did revolved round either industrial machine data networks (i.e. power grids, trucking fleets, etc) or how companies buy things (payments, procurement, supply chain, expense management, etc).

    In 2009, I decided I wanted to try building my own product/company, and started what became TelemetryWeb, a cloud platform for industrial machine data and the Internet of Things. We had customers and revenue, but after three years we made the tough decision to shut it down. Even though we failed, it was an amazing experience. The tech start-up community taught me a ton about how products/businesses are created, changed the way I look at the world at a fundamental level, and connected me to a network of amazing people that I love to work with.

    Almost immediately after we shut down TelemetryWeb, I co-founded Apruve, a payment platform for B2B e-commerce. I stepped away from the company in 2015 to focus on my family, but this was another amazing experience. I’m very grateful that my friends still work there and the company continues to grow.

    My favorite part about being a tech nerd is that my skills are applicable to almost any company in almost any industry. So while I’ve developed deep subject matter expertise in some key industries, I’ve had the opportunity to gain experience across dozens of industries.

    Continue reading "10 Minutes With Neal Tovsen, CTO, Consultant And Tech Community Supporter" »