Value the relationships of the people you meet and realize the value of these long-term relationships.
From Dahlonega, Georgia, Rodney Don Holder attended Jacksonville State University where he received his degree in computer information systems. Right after, he began working as support, followed by network engineering for a company called Digital Equipment that was later bought out by Hewlett Packard.
From there, Holder went to a company called KMC Telecom for three years as an integration supervisor where he did deployments for voice over IP. Then he went to AT&T and was a network engineering manager for several years.
Rodney Don Holder broke into the security world with biometrics at a company called Identica as their director of sales and marketing. After a couple of years, he moved on to Johnson Controls as their account executive. While there, he was among the top 10% in the country for sales. Holder worked there for almost eight years before moving to Southeastern Security Professionals as their Senior Vice-President of Business Development and Marketing. At SSP, he helped grow the company by 38% over 4 years.
Rodney Don Holder is now the Senior Vice-President of Business Development and Operations at CEI/Communications & Entertainment.
Where did the idea for CEI come from?
It was from opportunity and growth in my career. There are a lot of good things going on with various new technologies emerging, and just seeing how the audio-visual world is changing. I love a challenge, and it was something that really interested me to dig into and learn.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I start with following up on emails that came in overnight. Then I follow up with the different projects and contacts that I may have made the previous day. I try to keep a strong calendar for my time management purposes so that I don’t let any client or issue go untouched. I also love to get up early in the morning and work out. So, my most significant morning routine would be going to the gym to get my day started.
How do you bring ideas to life?
What I like to do when I have an idea is to sit with a team and discuss it. We all work together to see if it’s a good idea or not. If it is, we then bring it to life as a team.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I believe it’s the way the market’s going. It’s constantly changing. I also like the trend of hosted cloud services. That’s a real trend that kind of excites me. The way AI, artificial intelligence, is changing the perspective in security and today’s world.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I think getting up early and hitting the gym first thing in the morning. The reason I think that makes me a little more productive is it gets my blood flowing, keeps my heart going, and makes me feel good. It gives me a lot of energy throughout the day.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I’d tell a younger Rodney Holder to be a little more patient and realize that you’ve got to work smarter, not harder. I’d also tell him not to expect to have immediate success; just work at it and be strategic.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
If it’s not in my calendar, it’s not true. We have a limited amount of time in the day, and when I’m trying to plan out my day or week, if it’s not in my calendar, it’s not happening.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I would recommend hitting the gym every morning to get yourself going. Get yourself up and moving and awake so that you’re ready for the day.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I would say one strategy that has helped me to grow in my career has been to build relationships. Building strong relationships with not only the clients but also the vendors. That way, we can all work together to accomplish our goals and get people good quality products within their budgets.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I believe it would be missing opportunities. I wouldn’t call it a failure, more of a learning opportunity of valuing the relationships of strategic partners and clients. Realizing the value of long-term relationships and the long-term effects that can help you longer in life; maybe not only in business but personally as well.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I recommend cryotherapy. I think with how today’s world is changing and the benefits that you hear from cryotherapy, it seems to be a good business model. There’s a lot of research in the way it fights cancer and other health issues out there. I think it’s a trend of a business that’s going to be very successful.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
On books of EOS and training of the entrepreneurial operating system program. It helps you understand how to time manage your day, and how to look at and evaluate what’s going on in the marketplace as well as the business. It teaches you how to be more successful and operate more productively.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
D-Tools. It’s a software we use for quoting jobs, forecasting, and helping us to run our business in that manner. It’s business software.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
What the Heck Is EOS? A Complete Guide for Employees in Companies Running on EOS by Gino Wickman and Tom Bouwer. It’d be a great book to start with in the series. It’ll help you learn to be more successful in business.
What is your favorite quote?
“Make your life a masterpiece; imagine no limitations on what you can be, have or do.” – Brian Tracy
● Learn more about yourself.
● Value the relationships of the people you meet and realize the value of these long-term relationships.
● Work smarter, not harder. Don’t expect to have immediate success; work hard, be strategic, and success will follow.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.