May 11th is always a special day for us here at Sharp Hue. Today we celebrate our 6th birthday. We have officially survived five consecutive years of business. It is extremely satisfying and humbling to know that over 130 clients trust us to deliver exactly what they are looking for: a beautiful website that works.
Given that it is our birthday, it’s only fitting that we hear a few words about our past, present and future from Sharp Hue’s owner and CEO, Shan Pesaru.
What led you to found a web design firm?
I started Sharp Hue because I wanted to build a company around my passion. I built my first web site when I was in the 6th grade and knew it was something I wanted to do as a career. There is so much to learn in this industry and I think staying cutting edge has always been a driver for me. My education and career paths have always aligned with the Internet and every single day I try to become better at my craft.
What’s Sharp Hue’s current business philosophy?
Build enterprise quality solutions at affordable small business prices. Ordinarily, producing the highest quality product at the lowest price is a sure way to end up in the red. The way we make it happen is to offset the difference with extremely hard work. When we hit the 5 year mark last year, I knew we were on to something and that our “recipe” was proven. Growing a business during a recession quickly validated for me that our product is exceptional and in high demand.
What are your goals for Sharp Hue moving forward?
We’re on track to grow at a faster pace than ever. For us, that means hiring a new employee every few months. This past April, we hired a new manager of Client Services, Megan Perez. With him on board, we are able to take on a larger workload and deliver even more services in an accelerated time period. We have grown this company organically without any outside investment. Owning 100% of my company means a lot to me. In the next couple of years we will need to move into a bigger office space and add a few more developers and designers.
What about you? What do you see yourself doing after you add more staff?
Even though I’m the owner and CEO, you’ll still see me writing lines of code, configuring servers, and moving pixels just like all of our talented employees. I’ve worn all the hats over the years so I intimately understand what it takes to do this business right and exceptionally well. There will likely be a time where my role in Sharp Hue’s operations will transition to a purely visionary one. I’m thinking something like Creative Director and Head of R&D. You’ll have a tough time tearing me away from the keyboard!
Do you have any advice for aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners you’d like to share?
Customer service and communication are the keys to any business. If you listen to what your customer’s say, you’ll know exactly which way to head with your business. As you grow, expand your company at a rate that’s comfortable for you and in such a way that you constantly remind yourself of the core competencies and values that got you there in the first place. Remember to have fun in the process and get out and play every once in a while.
I often joke with budding entrepreneurs that every company I started with a business plan failed (because I tried hard to stick to the plan). The ventures of mine that still exist have experienced success because we adapt to customer needs, develop efficient processes, reinvent ourselves when necessary, carefully manage our expenses, and surround ourselves with talented people. I still stick to my entrepreneurial roots in order to stay agile and humble. The difference now is that I make fewer mistakes and better decisions.