This is the second in a series of articles profiling companies that are participating in BostonTrek 2002. With each new installment, it becomes more and more clear that there are still many great high tech jobs in the Boston area.
Empirix was founded in September 2000 as a carve-out from Teradyne to pursue the opportunity presented by the convergence of web, voice, and network technologies. From their corporate headquarters in Waltham, Empirix’s 325 employees have ramped up to sales of $60-80 million, selling leading application performance solutions. In other words, they help companies with web applications and contact centers, and make network infrastructure providers better and more reliable.
Recently, The Harbus spoke with Toffer Winslow (MBA ’99), Director of Enterprise Marketing, and a former BostonTrek trekker.
HARBUS: Why is Empirix participating in BostonTrek this year?
Winslow: It gives us a great opportunity to see a lot of talent quickly, and helps to get the Empirix name out. We really see BostonTrek as more of a recruiting than a marketing opportunity, though.
HARBUS: So are there really jobs available for MBAs? And what kind of experience do they have to have?
Winslow: Absolutely – in fact, we’re looking for a couple of talented people to start ASAP. We’re looking for two types of people – first, the talented general athlete/general manager – someone with a strong affinity for technology, but that doesn’t have to be a real propeller-head. They should be action-oriented, willing to roll up their sleeves, and able to think like our customers.
Second, we are also looking for people with a stronger technology background and high-tech product management experience.
HARBUS: What makes Empirix a good place for new MBAs to work?
Winslow: It’s a great combination of an entrepreneurial company with a well-seasoned management team. For example, our CEO was formerly the CFO of Teradyne, and we also have other strong Teradyne management experience. It’s really the best combination of smart money [including Teradyne, Matrix Partners, and high-powered local investors], good management and a great technology.
HARBUS: When joining a young high tech company, how important is it to be into the technology?
Winslow: To start with, we don’t expect people to know too much about our specific technology. However, it is essential for both you [the employee] and the employer to become passionate about the technology and its potential over time.
HARBUS: What would be your advice to graduating MBAs in this challenging market?
Winslow: First off, this is a great time to get into a young company. If you can find a company that has weathered the storm, or who has new money and ideas, you can really make a big impact. The market downturn has separated those that are really entrepreneurial at heart from those that were attracted by the gold rush mentality.
Secondly, when thinking about specific opportunities, make sure they have good management, smart money behind them, and most importantly that they have a solid, unique business model and technology. It’s all about going back to the fundamentals.
HARBUS: You went on BostonTrek when you were at HBS-looking back, what are your reflections on the experience?
Winslow: It’s a great way to get first-hand exposure to great companies, and get an overview of the local start-up community. It was a great experience.