An exclusive Tech Tribune Q&A with Jamie Jackson (founder and CEO) of Arkatechture, which was honored in our:
Tell us the origin story of Arkatechture – what problem were you trying to solve and why?
I was always chasing 3 things in my professional career:
- Doing something meaningful
- Working with people I enjoyed
- Making what I deserved
I always found myself achieving 2 of the 3, but never all 3 together. This was the main driving force behind starting it. After we got it going, I discovered these are the 3 pillars many others are also looking for.
What was the biggest hurdle you encountered in your journey?
Since we were bootstrapped, every day was an adventure! For myself personally, I never aspired to be the CEO. As the success of the company came, I found myself often having to “offload” responsibilities that I once thought defined me as a technologist to others that could do things better. I often found myself having to reshape what value I brought to the company until I felt comfortable calling myself the CEO. Redefining what you think makes you valuable every 3 months or so is a rather humbling experience.
What does the future hold for Arkatechture?
We’ve recently taken in our first round of investment to bring our SAAS solution to market faster. We have gone through a rather large growth phase to achieve scaling this up to the next level. Even after this growth/scale, we’ve maintained our mission of building a sustainable business and growing a healthy organization for individuals that call Arka home. We’re excited about the new products and offerings that funding has enabled us to focus on.
What are your thoughts on the local tech startup scene in Portland?
I think the local tech startup scene here in Portland has always been a “thing”. I think there’s been a healthy mix of legacy companies, ESOPs, and companies chasing the IPO. Being geographically close to Boston has definitely helped, but there’s been a healthy startup scene here for quite some time. I don’t think Portland is under the radar any longer and the pandemic really changed the dynamics of the workforce. I’d love for it to be our little secret still, but I think the cat’s out of the bag 😉
What’s your best advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
The time never feels 100% right to do it, but really it never will until it’s too late. I was fortunate to make the jump early on in my life, prior to starting a family. It came with a lot of trust and belief in yourself and the team you build around you and a lot of hard work, but yielded some of the most exhilarating experiences as well. I now have a wife and 3 young kids. I’m not sure I’d be able to make the jump at this phase. So if you’re passionate about something, go for it 100%. You won’t hate yourself for not chasing something you’re passionate about and failing. But you will hate yourself for not attempting to do it in the first place. There are many other founders who are out there and willing to help you, even with the basics. Seek out these networks as they are a tremendous resource.