Have you heard of the Butterfly Effect? Like the transforming insect from which the theory gets its name, the Butterfly Effect describes how one small change can result in large differences over time. That’s what has happened. One meeting, supported by great leaders in the community, has resulted in significantly accelerating the growth of a company.
Here is my story:
COMING OUT OF THE COCOON
Last Tuesday’s meeting was a bit surreal. Courtesy of Live Free & Start, our company, PickUp Patrol, gathered at the State House to meet with state leaders in the field of education. Sitting there next to Governor Hassan, I thought, “Only in New Hampshire!” Really, where else do you get this type of service? Our state gives a truly unique level of support to new tech businesses, bolstered by the Live Free & Start Initiative.
Tony and Brian, both software developers, nailed the pitch. These 16-year-old’s presentation skills (honed from years of participating in FIRST) are better than most adults. Eric, one of our founders, followed up with a history of our product and the deep connection PickUp Patrol has with our school community. Next, things were opened up to the group with various people asking questions and offering advice and suggestions for further connections. I took lots of notes as the hour flew by. We wrapped things up with some pictures and walked away with a list of next steps.
There is no doubt in my mind that the Butterfly Effect was in action when an article on our UNHC selection was picked up by the Associated Press. Suddenly, our story started popping up all over the place: Houston, Kansas, Washington, Utah, and many others. Our website activity went crazy; we got hits from all over the country and then the world. I have no idea why someone in Africa is checking out our site. Just maybe, they have school dismissal problems there too!
The press coverage continued to flow with an NHPR interview, several more newspaper stories and a brief bit on WMUR where we joked that our collective company was referred to as “Mont Vernon Woman”.
Press is great for getting your name out there, but we’re looking for sales. Luckily, along with all those website hits came inquiries for more information about PickUp Patrol creating some great new leads from in and out of the state.
Our PickUp Patrol project has provided so many surprising and enlightening experiences, from an all-expense paid trip to Disney World to compete in a National STEM Competition, to a White House visit. We are also thankful for the amazing people of SAU #39 and AlphaLoft’s incredible Acceleration NH program. We never imagined we’d be in the Governor’s Chambers around a big ol’ table with people we wouldn’t dream of meeting, let alone all at once!
In the next few weeks and months, we’ll be conducting meetings and presenting at various events arranged by our esteemed panel. We look forward to working hard and being able to report back to you the success of the Ultimate NH Connection!