James Kee, our friend, our brother and we proud to call him boss
Dear readers, today i'm going to blog about something very personal to me, and this post have not yet been agreed by the guy i wanna talk about, but well, i do what i do. The story might not be interesting to you, but i hope it could inspire someone, or at least have different point of view about managing a company
First of all, just a little bit about myself. I spent 9 years in coffee industry and i had the most bumping career than anyone i knew. It was up and down and I experienced more failures than success (to my personal goals, not the company i served).
And i met James.
Fast car, big bike, fishing, mountain climbing, aeroplane,etc. My first impression of him is "big boys, who love big games". We know each other for quite sometimes before i come to work with him (technically, i work for him, but he hate the "for", he prefer the "with"). We never have an interview, nor meeting in appropriate place. We could have conversation for hours and hours, coffee after coffee about what success mean to us, how a company could bring talent people together, about the future, the mission, the goals and the business.
Often, we have a completely point of views about things, we play attack and defense, we questions at everything other call "norm", we point out each other mistakes, we prove how wrong other is. But not for once, we walk out of conversation with no conclusion, or he play the card "i am the boss". And for this, i wholeheartedly respect him.
For the guy like me, people say i will not be able to work for a company for long due to my attitude. For the record, I am a straightforward dude, looking at fact, seeking for the truth even how ugly it is. I prefer to speak freely what went wrong regardless who is making mistake.
However, what points out to be my weakness, he see it as strength. He likes others tell him his flaw, rather than flattering how good he is. When we face problems, polishing words without solutions means nothing to him. He could take a punch on the face and learn something new, rather than stay unknown. He encourage the team to be independent, to take the ownership at what we are doing, and be responsible to what we did. He likes to stay at work late and proves he can work harder than all of us (i hate this , a lot)
As a young start-up company, the road to success is still far away ahead, sometimes we do not even know what success actually is. But we never stop trying to be better. And it matters to him.
He always tell us "it doesn't matter if we don't achieve our target this month, but we know, and as long as we see everyone's 100% effort, we will get it tomorrow".
Today, we serve more than 100 customers. E and S need to work better and roast more coffee than before, N and D often stay up to 1am at customer side fixing and repairing machines. And no one is whining. The fact, we even make fun of each other and create joke out of it. This make me wonder, what bring those guys together? what drive them? And when i look back , i see him, like a big brother, and i know the answer....