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Gregory Roufa

Gregory Roufa
Gregory Roufa, founder and CEO of Sodalis, a company that is transforming the way we interact with each other. Gregory then went on to form Corrigo, a platform to help manage facilities with wireless work orders back in 1999.

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Summary

Today on the podcast, I talk with Gregory Roufa, founder and CEO of Sodalis, a company that is transforming the way we interact with each other. Gregory started off in the mortgage brokerage business where he learned how to work with others to get stuff done. Gregory then went on to form Corrigo, a platform to help manage facilities with wireless work orders back in 1999.

His time at Corrigo was a wild ride. At one point, it went from 200 people down to 16 in a single day. That taught him a lot about how to manage a business during a downturn but also the toll that stress and strain can take on you.

One of Gregory’s proudest technical achievements was keeping Corrigo’s cloud service up and running during the early 2000’s -- which was the very beginning of cloud computing. To put that in perspective, Amazon Web Services did not even exist back then.

Gregory also learned during those 20 years of ups and downs to take things one step at a time, prioritize, and to find good people. His team was what really made it all work. Without a good team that’s aligned to the goals, works well together, and can trust each other, Corrigo would have folded a long time ago.

Gregory’s new venture, Sodalis, is totally different from real estate management. Sodalis is focused on helping people heal through deep connections with others through VR. It’s a fascinating idea whose time has come and if you’re interested in how to have transformative experiences without using drugs, this is one to listen to.

Now let’s get better together

Actions to Try or Advice to Take

  • You can be too early to a market -- especially when the industry is a laggard like real estate management.
  • Switching to a recurring revenue model is what saved Corrigo in the early days. Being able to have customers pay for the service allows you to do continuous development.
  • Team communications are essential. A shared background can help speed this up since the communications can be short and clear.
  • Customization vs Configuration:  It’s better to configure instead of doing a lot of customization.
  • Selling into the Expense side is the lowest rung of the corporate hierarchy. It’s always better to sell into the revenue side since they (Sales, HR, Finance) always want to make more revenue or be more productive.
  • You need an easy Return on Investment (ROI) story and it has to relate to generating revenue.

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