Northern Nevada Business Weekly: How did you get started in your business?
Mark Reimers: After numerous service and sales positions in the Reno computer market, I was laid off when the company I worked for closed the Reno store. I resolved to avoid letting other managers dictate how much I would work and how much I should be paid by starting my own computer consulting business.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: What natural talents did you bring to the business? What did you have to learn?
Reimers: I like people and love to solve problems with technology in businesses. I seem to be able to question the people within an organization and assist them in determining what they want computers and technology to accomplish for them. I had to learn there are many hats a business owner has to wear to run an effective and profitable business. Focusing on my skills is what provides income for the business, doing things poorly or late causes needless stress and complications. I now employ others who fill the gaps in my weak areas, which frees me to provide solutions and expertise for my clients.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: How has the industry changed since you started?
Reimers: TMI (Too Much Information). Twenty-two years ago I could support most networks and the applications a business might use. Now I specialize in designing, implementing and supporting Microsoft networks. When I encounter a situation outside of the area of my expertise I bring in other professionals to support my client's needs. I often find the need to act as an interpreter for my clients to explain the benefits of a particular piece of technology as it integrates into their business model.
NNBW: When we come back to visit with you in five years, what changes will we see in the company?
Reimers: Five to 15 more full-time employees, with additional areas supported outside of Microsoft networks, such as VOIP, video teleconferencing, etc. The company will be partially owned by the employees so they have a stake in providing excellent customer service.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: What are the challenges you'll need to overcome to reach your goals?
Reimers: Providing the right management environment for the technical employee with opportunity for technical growth.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: What kind of manager are you?
Reimers: Too laid back, but that's changing as I bring on more staff. Setting up a procedure manual for employees was hard, and it's an ongoing process as I find weak areas to fix.
NNBW: If you could have a "do-over" in your career, what would you do differently?
Reimers: Maintain my relationships with friends and clients better.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: What do you find most satisfying in your professional life? Your personal life?
Reimers: Professionally it's being the hero and solving the problems that are keeping a client from accomplishing their goals and tasks. Personally it's working hard to maintain my 28-year marriage with my wife Liz, because she is whom I want to spend the rest of my life with.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: How do you spend time away from the office? Why is this important to you?
Reimers: I love to ride my motorcycle and travel. I also love to read books that range from history to science fiction. Burnout is a problem in my industry, so taking time off, even if it's just an afternoon, keeps me focused and rested.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: What's best advice anyone gave you?
Reimers: He who serves their clients and looks after their needs first will always have much opportunity and income.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Any final thoughts?
Reimers: Don't start any business just for the money! It's not just about the money you can make. People tend to want to work with people they can trust and who are passionate about the services or products they are providing. That's what satisfies in the end, building a relationship with someone.