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TRG Founder Sean Kennedy reveals his three principles for success

In 2002, Sean Kennedy founded a small business that refurbished technology equipment. Today, it is one of the world’s fastest-growing enterprise mobility companies.

When I founded TRG more than 20 years ago, we had five employees and one simple idea: help companies extend the life cycle of their technology by upgrading on their schedule, instead of their device sellers. Two decades later, we are one of the fastest-growing managed service providers on the continent, with a growing global footprint.

It hasn’t always been easy keeping up with the ever-changing landscape. After all, we launched our business before most of the technology we support was invented. But we’ve learned how to survive and thrive over 21 years of technological, economic and cultural change. And we’ve done it by staying true to the three basic principles we laid out on day one.

1. The customer always comes first

Like all good startups, we were founded to solve a clear problem for a defined set of customers. These customers are our north star, and we’ve succeeded by building a team of people who simply refuse to say “no” to them.

When we realized customers needed more from us, we gave it to them, which is how we grew to become a full-service enterprise partner. When we saw them struggling to manage the rapid rise of mobile devices – from a few laptops for key employees to a fleet of company-issued smartphones and tablets – we adapted once again, spinning up what has become a world-class Mobile Device Management team.

Through it all, our direction has been guided by the needs of our customers. We’ve spent years earning their trust and loyalty by helping them make sense of an ever-shifting landscape. Over time, it has created a snowball effect, making us much stronger in Year 21 than we were in Year One.

2. Grow smart to grow big

We all know there is no such thing as standing still in business. Growth was in our blood from day one, but we were also very strategic about when and where to expand. In fact, we were in our second decade when we fully hit the gas pedal, launching our first European location and kicking off a period of rapid expansion and acquisition that continues to this day.

In the last two years alone, we have seen the most explosive growth in our entire history, including several new European locations and a massive expansion of our Canadian operations.

Like the rest of our business, we have been able to accelerate these efforts over time because each one builds upon the previous wisdom we have gained. Every smart expansion and wise acquisition opens up new opportunities, allowing us to be more aggressive today than ever before.

3. Create spaces where you would actually want to work

We trust our employees to relax at work because we know how hard they work.

When you never say “no” to your customer and you’re constantly pursuing growth, you’re going to be asking a lot of your employees. To do their best work, I’ve found that they need exactly what I need: a space where they feel comfortable to work and play hard.

Of course, we’re not the first growing company to provide an on-site gym or a company watering hole (an entire craft brewery in our case), or any of the other amenities we offer our employees to show our appreciation for their work. But for us, the perks aren’t the point; they are the outward expression of the larger idea that you should actually enjoy being at work.

We trust our employees to relax at work because we know how hard they work, and I have found people perform much better when they believe you trust them. Therefore, we have worked hard to retain this sense of trust and comfort across the organization, especially as we have expanded into new businesses and locations.

Throughout our evolution, many things have changed. Today’s technology, products and partners are all very different from what we knew in 2002.

But some things have stayed exactly the same. We’re still growing, we’re still having fun and we still accept any challenge put in front of us. It’s not always easy, but failure isn’t in our vocabulary, and we live by our success-or-else mantra every day.

TRG is a global, privately-owned managed services provider that handles the full life cycle of every enterprise endpoint. Their mission is to lead the future of enterprise technology by driving bold endpoint solutions with a ‘success-or-else’ approach.

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