We caught up with Kim Goldberg, the former COO at Computrition, and a current Group Leader at Jonas Software. We talked about her career progression, from being one of the first employees of Computrition to eventually joining Jonas Software.
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Kim, thanks very much for taking the time to meet with us today.
You joined Jonas Software through the acquisition of Computrition in 2007.
Can you walk us through your background prior to joining Jonas?
I started with Computrition in 1983 as one of the first employees. Over my tenure, I was able to work with all aspects of the company. The time allowed me to truly understand different areas of the business and work with different personalities.
My last position was the Chief Operating Officer and as the COO, I oversaw the support services and professional services groups. Support services covered interface, point of sale, and technical. Professional services was project managers, trainers, and data building. So in addition, I negotiated the contracts for the Sales Team, was the liaison with Accounting and I maintained all of our government contracts. So I kept pretty busy.
Can you describe your career progression since joining Jonas?
After the acquisition, I was lucky to work with Matt Otchet, who was our integrator. Matt Otchet is now our portfolio group leader. So during the time after the acquisition, I was able to implement best practices and I even had the opportunity to create some.
While I was still working with Computrition, I started assisting with integrations for new businesses. Working with multiple companies was the best way to see how the current best practices could be modified or incorporated in all sizes of companies and all different industries.
After doing several integrations, I moved to the COO for our group portfolio. As the COO, I got to coordinate our group’s annual university and work with new companies coming on. The universities are probably one of the most wonderful opportunities for people to meet each other from different companies, come together, share experiences and learn from great guest speakers and just really learn from each other. I also continued working with other group leaders in our portfolio to help with their integrations of their businesses and help those businesses grow and understand our best practices.
Then I got to move to M&A. That gave me the opportunity to move up to be a group leader for our construction group, and I jumped at that chance to have one group of my own to really focus on and grow.
You mentioned sharing best practices and that that actually is a good segue into the next question.
At Jonas, we often talk about our ABCs as differentiators. We have autonomy, our decentralized operating model. We have buy and hold forever. We never sell, which allows us to invest for the long term. And our culture of sharing best practices, learning from the Jonas or CSI family of
software companies, as you mentioned.
How has your experience aligned with these three differentiators?
It has been in complete alignment. I was able to experience the autonomy firsthand with my time at Computrition.
It truly is a decentralized, but really supportive model. We continue to keep our fun and focused culture and independence. While I was working as the COO for our portfolio, If we had a company that was struggling, we didn’t talk about selling them, we talked about helping them. We could all pull together and see, where did they need help? What did they need? What could we do to bring their success back and working hand-in-hand with those businesses to improve the areas where they needed us?
Best practices are probably the largest focus for me because that tied into a lot that I did as an integrator.
Let’s shift gears a little bit and talk a little bit more about you.
How has Jonas Software helped you continue to develop your career path?
So Jonas believes in promoting from within and is so supportive they even encourage you to move to different (Jonas) companies if that’s what works for you. They want you to find your passion.
Jonas continually opens doors with lots of opportunities and the ability to attend the portfolio universities I mentioned earlier. For example, just recently, I was able to attend an M&A conference across all of CSI. That really opens your eyes and expands your learning on not only what Jonas companies do, but other companies within CSI.
Additionally, our portfolio has what we call an operational excellence development program. It’s just a great way to learn from each other and mentor each other.
You mentioned earlier that you recently became a group leader at Jonas, and now you oversee multiple companies in addition to looking at potential new acquisitions for Jonas.
What’s it like being on the other side of the table now and talking to other companies from an acquisition point of view?
I have experience in what they’re going through, so I’m able to use that perspective during our discussions. It allows me to share my experiences and the outcomes I can talk about the way my past company handled things and kind of translate it for them into the Jonas way and help them with operation efficiency and profitability.
My experience also helps me give a new company’s insight into the performance of their business and knowing their numbers and helping those numbers go in the direction that they want them going in.
Let’s face it, being part of a company that gets acquired can be pretty stressful.
Having gone through it yourself, what advice or messaging would you give to the employees of a company that are about to join Jonas?
Change can be very stressful, but can also be really exciting. The team makes it easy. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a lot of work to gather the data they need. I happen to be secretary of the corporation in addition to the other things at the time we were aquired. So a lot of the data gathering fell on me, but that was the start of learning and understanding how it will be to work with Jonas. Someone’s working with you to answer those questions and ensure you have the support you need.
So advice I’d give is don’t be afraid to ask the questions. Know what you’re in store for. Know what your future is going to be. These discussions will give you that peace of mind.
My last question for today is what gets you excited about the future of Jonas?
Well, there’s always a new opportunity waiting for someone. The team I work with is the most supportive group I’ve ever had. Jonas philosophy is to work together as a team and resolve issues
and finding what’s right for the business and the employees. Continued growth, ability to continue learning, and helping others is what really excites me.
Thank you Kim Goldberg for sharing your story with us. Looking for a successful career like Kim’s? Learn how you can join the family at Jonas Software by visiting our career opportunities page.
If you own a software business, we would love to learn more about your company. Feel free to reach out to learn more.