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Can a Father Teach Persistence to Succeed?
When working as a 16 year old on an oil well I learned a lesson I carry with me to this day.
My dad was a self made man. We had moved to Oklahoma from California during the energy crisis in the 1970’s. My dad had researched and invested in an oil lease from a cantankerous older man and his wife. My dads relatives put up the money to drill and complete the prospect oil well. Later my dad would be able to drill his own wells. This one he had a lot riding on, he has vested capital and relatives money invested. This may not sound like an original story, but here is where it builds character the stuff dreams are made of.
The location was in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. At that time was the headquarters to Phillips Petroleum. We drilled the well and set the cemented pipe in the ground. Then you ran a log that shows you what the oil sand looks likes underground. While it looked encouraging this is no guarantee of success. A man named Rod was pulling a swab on the well. After you shoot holes in the pipe deep in the earth you send what is similar to a swab used in our ears. This one weighs a couple hundred lbs. and is on the end of a heavy steel cable down in the ground you then pull it up as fast you can to bring the well in or get it to flow.
Rod was the man who had built up his pulling unit business from the ground. A very tough exterior of a guy who could look right through and think this kid has had it easier. I have seen him work many men into the ground including my friend Doug. Who needed some summer work and I might add was not happy about the referral to work with Rod. Once he figured out how hard Rod was going to work him. It was what Rod said next that made us turn white as a sheet.
After he had swabbed on the well for close to two hours, he looked at my dad in front of our family who had put the money up and said. “Chet there is nothing here give it up.” My dad looked at him with conviction and said “keep swabbing”. He did not have to think about it and did not seem worried. My dad had done a lot of research on this prospect and was offsetting a well from 40 years earlier that was never brought on line at the time. So Rod sent the swab down a few more times. What happened next would have an impact on me and how I built my IT Asset remarketing company.
As the swab went down and started its trek back up the pipe. The ground began to rumble. The heavy steel cable seemed lighter than it should be as it came up out of the hole. About that time Rod yelled “run” as the men jumped off the pulling unit and we looked up to see the steel cable spooling out of the hole so fast it was starting to lay out all over the ground. It was coming out much faster than the unit was pulling on it. The noise got louder and ground shook further. There was a roar coming out of the well. We knew it was time to run. The well unloaded all the cable and the swab shot up to top of the pulling unit block 60 feet in the air. It hit is so hard that it speared back down in the ground the men later had to dig it out of the ground. Then water shot up to the top of the derrick and a sound rang so loud it would pierce your ears. The men scrambled to get a value on the well. My dad brought in a very successful gas well. How does that apply to cleaning out Data Centers?
For the last 25 years I have been building an IT Asset company tailored to Data Centers with a small team of dedicated people. Many times I have felt the effect of Rod saying “give it up its too hard”. Shortly after starting my company with $1800 I had built up $20,000 in capital. A customer took over ½ our capital and would not pay for material. I was ready to give up. My dad encouraged me and he and my wife’s dad loaned us the missing funds. We repaid them with interest in 6 months. I preserved to build something that helps companies add value. We have an impact giving back more money to our corporate clients.
Another resent example in 2014 there was a 100 million dollar IT Asset company that needed help re-marketing certain IT assets like memory and processors. IT turned out we were so efficient that we increased their profit above what their own staff was doing. The director wrote a testimonial for us. The interesting part was competitors were putting us down to the customer. However we persisted and this is the effect.
“I could not be more pleased with the experience we’ve received working with ex-it technologies. This partnership has increased our resale revenue on this particular material by over 30% as well as decreased our processing costs significantly. In addition, the Ex-IT Technologies culture and like mindedness regarding the commitment to environmental and regulatory compliance is extremely important to our company. ex-it has been and will continue to be a great partnership for us.”
Director of Sales, 100 million dollar IT company
Because of our 26 years of experience persisting through trials we can help companies and data centers get a much higher value using our White glove service (insert link). For Data center Assets which includes servers, storage and networking gear.
So can success be learned? I can you tell you I learned Failure is not an option. Success is trying until you do succeed.