Lead with Humble Confidence

1024 410 David DeWolf

As I approached exit 57, brake lights lit up the horizon. Thankfully this was my exit. Just one block off of I-66, on Waples Mill Road, sat a sprawling office building. Known to many as the “WebMethods Building,” in homage to the middleware provider that IPOd in 2000 to much fanfare, to me this building was the “ServiceBench Building.”

ServiceBench was “my” client. But, for whatever reason, for the first time that morning, I realized it was actually “our” client. It hit me like a ton of bricks – as hard as I had to jam on the brakes to prevent my Accord from crashing into the car in front of me. I had 6 employees. There were 6 families depending on me for a paycheck. What had I done? When did I sign up for this? I didn’t even know how to sell, never mind make payroll.

Over the course of the next several weeks, I seriously contemplated whether building a business was really what I wanted to do. Did I have what it took to be an entrepreneur? Did I want to leave software behind and build a business? Could I honestly look my friends in the eye and tell them that they had a stable job?

Ultimately, I decided to go for it. And, just over a decade later, I found myself running a global business with nearly 1000 employees, serving household brands like CISCO. I’m often asked what the secret of my success has been. And, no matter how I cut it, I have found that the secret to my success throughout my entire career comes down to 2 words – Humble Confidence.

From an early age I have been a natural leader.