No is the easy way out for society and we have become conditioned to just accept it in our daily lives. I like to push the envelope to really make sure I have exhausted all the possibilities before I accept No.
Ryan Vestby is the CEO of CompuVision, one of Canada’s largest IT managed service providers. Ryan started with CompuVision as the company’s third employee at the age of twenty-one, and has played an integral part in the company’s growth and evolution. In the last few years Ryan has taken a special interest in Disruptive Technologies, which is technology that significantly alters the way that businesses operate. He dubs CompuVision with being a 25 year old business with a start-up mentality. He sits on the Alberta Innovates Leadership Council that will help set the 5 Year strategic plan for the province of Alberta, and won the Business in Edmonton 2017 Leaders award. Ryan is an active member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and the only Canadian a part of TRUE Profits Group (TPG). He also spearheaded the national launch of Disruption Magazine Canada (disruptiomagazine.ca). He is a proud husband and a father to three young boys.
Where did the idea for CompuVision come from?
It all started from a post-secondary final project that was submitted by our founder Bernie Bourgeois.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Well I couldn’t live without my Executive Assistant. To drive the most efficiency throughout my day I live by the calendar. In 30 minute chunks. To make myself the most productive I have removed myself from all of the day to day operations. I only have two direct reports: My EA, and our Director of Marketing.
How do you bring ideas to life?
This is a great question, I find the ideas are the easy part, it is the execution that is difficult and were most companies fail. I have surrounded myself with an amazing team that translates the ideas into actions and make it all happen. We also leverage the global freelance market to execute on the many initiatives that we have on the go at one time. We are big supporters of using the best talent to get the job done, no matter where you may be located.
What’s one trend that excites you?
At a macro level it is witnessing the endless possibilities that Technology is unlocking. Things that we thought were not possible just a few years ago, are coming on the scene at a rapid pace. I feel like this is what it must of felt like in the goldrush days of the 1800’s. Anything is possible.
On a micro level AI/ML (artificial intelligence and machine learning) I think will have the greatest impact on mankind, good and bad.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I focus on what I am good at, and leave all the things I am not good at to smart people in our firm. I actually don’t want to be apart of many decisions that go on with in our company. I focusing on mastering my curiosity and my ability to tell a good story.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Be more patient.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
That sometimes money need to be invested or spent with no Return on Investment attached to it.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Be Curious. It is one of our Core Values and I live it on a daily basis. I also almost never take no for answer when I am determined. No is the easy way out for society and we have become conditioned to just accept it in our daily lives. I like to push the envelope to really make sure I have exhausted all the possibilities before I accept No.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.
Embracing the Center of Influence Sales model. Having other people or organizations promote and sell your services for you is one of the great differentiators any business can do.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
It would probably be taking things personally. If I didn’t win a deal or we had a client move on, I would let it affect me personally. It is hard not to let those things eat at your personal ego. I have come to realize that as our business evolves so will our client base and I have come to accept that. Still this is a work in progress.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Focus on your company’s story. Make it unique and perfect your narrative. If you have the right narrative it will captivate prospects and they we be drawn to you and your value proposition. Also hire people that are great at things you are not and give them all of that responsibly. It will do wonders for your growth and sanity.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I am about efficiency and convenience. If there is an opportunity to streamline my day, I will take it. Parking is a good example. I valet park, at the airport, the ski hill, and everywhere that offers it. If I can save even 10 minutes not looking for a parking spot, or walking cause I had to park ½ km away I will take it.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
Veryfi, I use this to scan all my receipts as they get created. I now don’t have accounting hounding me for that $10 parking receipt.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“Exponential Organization” by Salim Ismail. This book contributed to our transformation. There is great actionable items in here that any business can benefit from.
What is your favorite quote?
“Reputations are built on Results”