270 George Street North, Peterborough On. (647) 885 7687 contact@gyroscopic.ca
Ask an Expert Series

Pubished by Kimberly wells on 10/06/2020 @ 3:30pmEST

Chris Beetham

Committed to People, Committed to the Future: Meet Chris Beetham.

Kimberly Wells

Kimberly Wells

Marketing & Public Relations Specialist

Welcome back to another Gyroscopic blog! Last time we introduced you to one of our amazing developers, Andrew and this week we want you to meet Chris! We want to highlight one of our amazing founders and his perspective on Gyroscopic and leadership.

Chris is Gyroscopic’s President and CEO. He’s a Trent University Alumni with a degree in Business Administration and a specialization in finance. He’s an entrepreneur at heart, finding success in his first business at 15 years old and his second at 23; and he loves every dreadful minute of it! Chris learned programming and software development independently of his formal finance education, guided by a passion for video game development. He also enjoys 3D artwork, digital music composition and graphic design. In his spare time, Chris enjoys camping, photographing abandoned places, playing piano and sport shooting.

Since we’re out of office due to COVID-19 I had the opportunity to interview Chris over Discord and he had a lot to say about his plans for Gyroscopic and what it’s like being a leader of a startup company.

Question: What encouraged you to start your own business in tech?

“Owning a business is something I've always wanted to do, I started my first business when I was 15. I bought and sold military artefacts from World War I and II. I had a lot of fun! In my first year of university - I didn't have access to a vehicle anymore and it made it difficult to go to trade shows or re-stock shelves. I also got really busy with my studies and decided that it was time to move on and explore some new things. It was great while it lasted, and helped me pay my way through university, but I knew it wasn't a particularly scale-able business (new WWII artefacts aren't exactly being created every day haha)

Studying new technology used to be a hobby of mine, starting Gyroscopic actually came to fruition through serendipity. It worked out because I got to combine my love for business and technology into one project” Being a business administration student, it was only a matter of time before Chris had the idea to create a tech startup with his friends.

Question: What are some of the most difficult aspects of running a startup?

“Startups are stressful! You have to learn how to manage cash flow and make sure you have enough money to pay people. You also have to learn people management skills. Dealing with individual personalities and balancing all of them in the workplace is hard and you get tugged in a lot of directions when a lot of people are in your ear”.

Question: What advice would you give someone looking to create their own tech startup?

“Things won’t go the way you expect them to! You will fail and it will be difficult but you have to keep going. One of our biggest challenges was being concise about what we wanted to do, having clear objectives and how to meet them is important. Establish a viable product or source of funding! It’s hard to start to scratch and by yourself. Get a good team together businesses cant run by themselves!”

A good leader is someone who listens to their team and understands their strengths. Understanding that they don't have all the answers and isn’t the expert in everything is the key to being a good leader.

Question: What type of leader would your team describe you as?

“I’m definitely not the type of leader that is the general charging at the front. I prefer to provide resources, give support and direction. I like to call myself a jack of all trades but I am by no means an expert in anything. I empower my people to be the best at what they do instead of telling them how they should do it. I’m a little democratic, I prefer to have a consensus on issues than being authoritarian. I want everyone happy and onboard”.

Question: What’s your favourite part about being in the tech industry?

“I love that I’m able to learn about other industries and businesses too. You can apply technology to any industry and we’re lucky that we’re able to be engaged with so many cool businesses. Seeing something you’ve built come to life is a great feeling. We focus a lot on automation and I have to say that’s one of my favourite things so far. It’s amazing seeing how automation works for people. It takes away repetitive things and leaves that person with the mobility to do more than data entry.

People are good at solving problems creatively and that's our advantage over AI and data. Computers are good at organizing and processing. Let computers do what they’re good at and let people do what they’re good at”.

Startups are always looking towards the future. Chris enjoys the company culture that’s been created so far and is excited to see what the future holds for Gyroscopic.

Question: Last question, where do you see Gyroscopic in a few years?

“I see us becoming an integral part of the Peterborough & Kawartha economy by providing local businesses with the technology they need to stay competitive. Ideally, I want Gyroscopic to become the digital nerve-centre of both Peterborough and the surrounding communities. We're always looking for community partnership opportunities and we're excited to foster a new community of innovation for small and medium-sized businesses across the province."

We’re definitely going to grow more but I don’t want us to be a gigantic company. I want everyone to still be comfortable, have a healthy work-life balance and be happy. I enjoy the culture we have now, it’s collaborative and friendly”.

If you want to learn more about our amazing team stay tuned for more blog updates! We have a wonderful team and can’t wait for you all to meet them and hear what we’ve been up to!