A decade is a long time. We know because we just celebrated our 10th year in business last year. A lot can happen in 10 years, and for Abstrakt, that was certainly the case. Over the last 10 years, we’ve grown our partnerships, our processes, and of course, we’ve grown as an organization.
As we head into our second month in our 11th year in business, we wanted to take a minute to recognize three special team members who have been with us through it all. A decade at the same job is truly an accomplishment. As a few of the most tenured employees at Abstrakt, they can now say they’ve been with us for a decade, not something many working people can say nowadays. Chris Gooding, President of Abstrakt Cloud Solutions, Amy Crump, Automotive Virtual Marketing Manager and Erich Krause, Art Director, are our three team members who have been with Abstrakt since the get go. To recognize them, we asked that they answer 10 questions to reflect on their time with Abstrakt.
Question 1: What is your position at Abstrakt?
Chris: President of Abstrakt Cloud Solutions
Amy: I’m a Virtual Marketing Manager (VMM) for our automotive accounts
Erich: Art Director
Question 2: How did you first get involved with Abstrakt 10 years ago?
Chris: I was introduced to Scott by his mother-in-law who happened to be my director at Anheuser-Busch.
Amy: I worked with Scott and Brian at their previous company – Full Circle Solutions. The position I had there was being absorbed by a Florida company. Scott reached out to me the day I found out my position at Full Circle Solutions was being eliminated and offered me a position with Abstrakt. I don’t think he really knew where he could use me at Abstrakt, but I’m thankful he reached out and offered me a job.
Erich: I worked for Scott Scully at Full Circle Solutions and transitioned with him as he started Abstrakt.
Question 3: How have you grown personally and professionally in the last 10 years?
Chris: The experience of being part of a startup back in 2010 and throughout the various stages of growth, it’s given me immeasurable experience in what it takes to not only start a business but also how to overcome the challenges that come with rapid growth.
Amy: Personally—my kids are now 15 and 12 which is crazy to think since when I started at Abstrakt they were only 5 and 2. Both my kids keep me busy running from school activities and sports. Professionally, I feel a lot more comfortable and confident in what I do and how I help our clients. Since I’ve been around for a while, I’ve seen and experienced a lot. I’m able to help other co-workers with issues or problems that may come up from my past experience.
Erich: Tremendously. My design skill has increased tenfold through hard work and dedication.
Question 4: What is your favorite part of your job?
Chris: Being able to work alongside our team and clients to solve complex business problems using Salesforce.
Amy: My co-workers and the clients I work with. I’ve worked with one of my clients, Freedom Honda, since the beginning. I like to build relationships with the clients get to know them outside of work.
Erich: Retaining clients. I’m very satisfied when I wow them with more than they expect. Keeps them coming back.
Question 5: From your perspective, what would you say are Abstrakt’s greatest accomplishments over the years?
Chris: While Abstrakt has won many well-known awards for growth and being a best place to work, it’s really exciting to see so many people early in their careers be given opportunities to lead substantial parts of the business and develop into incredible leaders.
Amy: Growing and expanding Abstrakt as a whole. When I started, we were at Benton Park in a small office and now we’re getting ready to move into a new building. Crazy to think how there was just a handful of people 10 years ago and now there are over 300.
Erich: Growing into the behemoth it is currently. Going from 3-4 employees to 300+ and dominating.
Question 6: What is your favorite memory from your time at Abstrakt, thus far?
Chris: While there are too many to pick just one, our annual Give Back Day event is always memorable. This past year, I was able to bring my daughter along for the day, which made it even more special.
Amy: There have been a lot since I’ve been here 10 years. But I think I’d have to say my first President’s Club trip to Mexico in 2019 probably is the best. Work hard – play hard.
Erich: There isn’t just one. To sum it up, I guess my best memories are the presentations I’ve designed, the clients we’ve gained from that process and knowing I played a part in that.
Question 7: Describe what Abstrakt means to you, on a personal level, in 15 words or less.
Chris: Abstrakt has given me more opportunities to grow than I could have ever imagined.
Amy: We’re family. If anyone ever needs anything personally or workwise, there is always someone to help.
Erich: It’s my life. My co-workers are like my family. I live and love Abstrakt.
Question 8: What’s the biggest lesson you have learned during your time at Abstrakt so far?
Chris: In a business that’s growing rapidly, it’s important to build and maintain an environment that fosters and embraces change. There is no way to sustain growth without it.
Amy: Things are always changing, and you need to learn to grow and move with the change. Also, that the leadership team does not know what failure is. They work hard push everyone to want to be better and do better.
Erich: Seeing so many come and so many go really opens your eyes to how lucky you are to be on the right path in life.
Question 9: Who is your biggest inspiration?
Chris: My wife and kids are my biggest inspiration and also my biggest supporters. They make it all worth it.
Amy: My kids and husband. They push me to do better so we can do more things together as a family at take more trips together.
Erich: Our Partners. The dedication, the visions, the motivation they bring and the love we receive.
Question 10: Where do you expect to be in the next 10 years? In what ways do you expect to grow?
Chris: Over the next 10 years, I want to see Abstrakt reach the $100,000,000 revenue mark and for our newest business unit, Abstrakt Cloud Solutions, to be one of the most recognizable Salesforce consulting firms in the country.
Amy: Still working with our automotive clients, but maybe overseeing a few people as I know I can’t do it all forever.
Erich: I expect to be right here retaining clients and banging out creative layouts like a madman. Maybe managing a team of designers as well as designing.
To these three special team members—
Thank you for everything you’ve done over the last ten years. Thank you for the passion, friendship, and support you’ve brought to this organization. You all embody what it truly means to be an A-Player, and we couldn’t have done what we’ve done the last 10 years without you, nor can we take on next decade without your help. Here’s to many more years with the same business card!