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Do you understand the risks associated with your business? From financial risks to security risks and more? Bigleaf Networks’ CEO, Greg Davis, has had profound experiences with risk when working in the security industry during past ventures. 

With two employees being killed and one being shot, Greg was forced to face the reality of the risks in the security industry; leading to his move into technology. Find out more about Greg Davis’ experiences, knowledge, and business on today’s Entrepreneur Story.

What are three things every Entrepreneur should know?

Greg took some time to answer this first question because there’s a lot entrepreneurs should know, and he wanted to highlight the most salient points.  

Of everything Greg believes entrepreneurs should know, he highlighted: 

  1. Understanding the relationship between your product and the consumer base. How will your product be metabolized? Becoming aware of and understanding your product’s routes to market as well as possible friction or roadblocks is paramount to success. 
  2. Understand your people as well as how to get them moving. It’s important that you’re able to relate to and connect with your workforce so that your business is a healthy, productive work environment. 
  3. Understand the risk of your business on every front. From financial risks to security risks, market risks, relevancy risks, and more. You should be well-versed in identifying and managing various types of risks associated with your business.

What problem does your business solve and who are its customers?

Greg's business, Bigleaf Networks, addresses the challenge of ensuring a consistent and high-quality internet experience for businesses operating online. With the massive transformations our society has undergone in recent years, this is a rather pertinent problem for many businesses. 

They primarily target businesses that rely heavily on internet connectivity for various critical functions. Greg mentioned a scenario of a doctor in Houston needing to transmit dermatology images from the Texas Valley, or a franchise managing hundreds of veterinary clinics with connections to numerous service providers. In these cases, maintaining a dependable and uniform online experience is essential.

BigLeaf offers a service that sits atop generic internet connections, making them resemble enterprise-grade private circuits by encapsulating and prioritizing traffic on their private network, which enables seamless failover capabilities. 

This means that even if a customer's internet connection were to fail, critical online activities, such as telemedicine consultations or online ordering systems, can continue without disruption. 

BigLeaf's focus is on delivering consistent, high-quality internet performance to ensure that businesses can leverage the full potential of cloud services and other online tools in a distributed enterprise environment, ultimately helping them access the economies available through the cloud.

What inspired you to become an Entrepreneur?

Although Greg is a CEO, he doesn’t consider himself to be an entrepreneur. He went so far as to say that when he was an entrepreneur, it didn’t go very well. The term he used to describe himself is an “operator.” He explained that the “true entrepreneurs” start a business. When those businesses are at a scaling point where they’ve reached their managerial limits, Greg comes in to help them take their business to the next level. 

In terms of what inspired him to do this, Greg mentioned that he began his career at quite a high level, with a family already, and so he had a lot of responsibility at a young age. After the trauma of working for a security company and witnessing people getting hurt and shot, Greg realized that he needed a change. 

With a wife and two kids living in Louisiana, Greg’s back was against the wall. He needed access to capital, but couldn't rely on financial support from his family, leading him to explore alternative funding avenues.

Greg’s career aspirations are centered around his passion for operating businesses, building and scaling teams, and providing companies with the opportunity to realize their full potential. He mentioned his interest in helping businesses “punch above their weight.” 

Essentially, both necessity and Greg’s appetite for supporting businesses led him to do what he does today.

What would you have done with a million-dollar investment when you first started your business?

Greg began by answering the latter part of this question, stating that he absolutely would have spent an investment into the company differently. 

As the question relates to the allocation of seed capital, Greg believes that the best thing you can do early on with an investment is to understand how your product relates to the market and what the “calorie burn” between distribution and receiving is key. 

When he comes into a business with a certain cash value investment that money goes toward figuring out what needs to change about the product-market fit. Once that’s understood and things are relatively stable across the business, they can begin to think about allocating capital towards product growth and other things of that nature. 

Greg mentioned that the main areas he believes entrepreneurs want to spend money on are marketing and product development.

What is your proudest accomplishment as an Entrepreneur?

Throughout Greg’s career, his proudest accomplishment has been the fact that he’s never had to look for work when being an “operator.” He mentioned starting a job in 2000 that directly led to what he does today, never having stepped out of one deal without another deal to step into. 

He expanded on this by saying that he’s truly proud of the consistency and deliverance of growth and outcomes he’s achieved for shareholders. Greg specifically mentioned two notable achievements that he is extremely proud of. The first being his role as the CEO of "Big League," where he played a pivotal role in the company's growth and success. 

The other is putting together a significant deal, the "Hunger US deal," with a management team, which resulted in a transaction worth half a billion dollars within four years. These achievements reflect his ability to lead and contribute to significant business accomplishments, making them standout moments in his entrepreneurial journey.

What big goals are you looking to achieve?

Greg, like many of the CEOs, founders, presidents, and more that we speak to, has several goals and motivations for the near future. While financial success and achieving positive outcomes for shareholders are important to him, they are not his sole focus. Greg emphasized a deep commitment to the development of people, including both himself and those around him.

He acknowledged that although he may not possess exceptional talents or gifts, he is an incredibly hard worker as well as someone who can be extremely focused. Greg aims to create opportunities for those who may not have had them otherwise, just as others have done for him throughout his career.

Greg's primary goal revolves around personal and professional development. He aims to find and nurture talented individuals and build teams around them. While he acknowledges that this approach can create significant value in businesses and lead to satisfied shareholders, his core motivation lies in empowering individuals to recognize and utilize their abilities, even if they are "quiet" or overlooked. 

Greg Davis is your “average Joe” who has been lucky enough to receive opportunities that afforded him the ability to get to where he is today. What opportunities have you been afforded that have carried you and your business to success? 

Get in touch with us today so that we can chat about that and more as we dive into your own Entrepreneur Story!

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