I started Live Mercury in my college apartment almost a decade ago. It was my dream that small businesses, especially those owned and operated by families, could access marketing and technology services usually only reserved for much larger organizations. Throughout the life of that company we did some incredible things. I was joined by some amazingly talented people, many of whom I’m still privileged to call friends. I was even joined by some family members and got to experience the joys and challenges of working with family that so many of our clients experience.
By the fall of 2014 it became obvious that our recent growth efforts were not resulting in the outcomes expected by our team or our investors. Our executive team was faced with a tough choice; I had to make one of the hardest decisions of my career. In November 2014 we suspended client service and sales activity while we determined how to spin down operations as gracefully as possible for our employees and clients. Thankfully we were able to find positions for almost all of our team with our partners or clients.
As for our clients, we kept our team together to finish out all of the projects in our pipeline. Then we looked at our services lineup. We had a handful of clients on website and social management packages. We decided to hire freelancers to continue out the services already paid for by clients, while stopping all sales of new management services. Lastly, we decided to keep our hosting servers running for our clients so they would be minimally inconvenienced by our changes. As we have done for the prior 2 years, we resell WPEngine’s award winning hosting services.
Our competitive advantage at Live Mercury was the quality consultative experience we provided to our clients. Lots of firms did client services – many of them we highly respected. We understood that even the best code and graphic design would never solve broader leadership and strategy issues with our clients’ organizations. So we lead with strategy. Since a few of our executives and I were now freed from our daily operational duties we were able to spend time onsite with clients who needed more in-debth leadership and strategy consulting. This was the beginning of our consulting practice that would become Venture Greatly.
The transition that none of us would ever have asked for, turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Within a few months we had group of clients under contract for whom we were providing excellent service. Success stories began to trickle in as our efforts were paying off for our clients in a big way. As hard as ending the last chapter was. This part of our phoenix story is one of the proudest moments of my professional life. We had 2 problems though. We had a bit of an identity crisis. Live Mercury, deriving its name from the Roman god of commerce, didn’t apply as much to our consulting activities. Everyone in our community already identified us with great marketing and software development services. Our second problem was structural. I had forged some amazing relationships with other consultants and professionals andI wanted to create a home where full time consultants and adjuncts could come together to create win-win-win scenarios. Good for the client, good for the consultant, good for our team.
At the core of Live Mercury, I believed in the power of creators. Those who dare to invest their time, funds and heart to bring something into the world. This never changed. I’m constantly in awe of the people brave enough to ship meaningful work. In this spirit my next endeavor is named Venture Greatly. We provide strategy consulting to startups and centuries-old organizations who are committed to doing great things. If you aspire to greatness, If you have value to share in helping others reach greatness, I would like to talk to you about joining our team. If you’d like help to achieve your dreams, our hand is ever outstretched.
In January 2016, Venture Greatly LLC officially purchased all assets, contracts and marketing rights of Live Mercury, Inc. Beginning this year, that chapter is officially closed.
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