Little, 59, is selling for an unspecified sum over "a long time" to Cecere, 44, the president and a 15-year Little veteran.
"I'm the chair of the board and I meet with Joe about once a week, and I'm around if he needs me," Little said. "He and I have been talking about this for years.
"I made the decision years ago that I didn't want to sell to an outside firm because I've seen other companies that did and they were eviscerated. ... I like money, but my mortgage is paid. And I'm not about wringing as much as I can out of the company. Life is too short. It was about valuable work and working with these smart people."
Little called her 35-year entrepreneurial venture, which she launched after concluding she didn't want to go inside a big corporation or an advertising agency, an improvisational act that started with two other colleagues.
"It was a hang-the-curtain-in-the-barn-and-have-a-play production," she quipped. "I became more of a planner. I made a million mistakes along the way. But we had amazing people in this company over the years."
The business has fluctuated around
"It made me sick to my stomach to let several people go," Little said. "They all eventually landed with jobs or freelancing. We lost projects, not clients. We've built the business back up."
For years, the firm has tried to brand clients from the inside out. Not just producing brochures and annual reports, but trying to understand the culture of client companies and producing marketing materials that reflect the reality, Little said.
At the end of the day, Little said: "Employees are your most important customer. They bring your brand to life every day through every customer interaction."
Wolford's Warehouse District world thriving
The three technology businesses owned in whole or in part by
"Everything is growing like a weed," Wolford 46, CEO of Atomic Data and two smaller companies, quipped the other day.
Wolford called the Foundation a
Atomic Data, which took over and expanded a data center in the
A third Wolford firm employs five who provide software development for creative companies.
"The key to growth is to pick good people, keep them focused and get out of their way," Wolford said. "The hardest part, and I've made this mistake a few times, is hiring middle managers who don't know enough about technology."
It's a neat business model and a growing business. Website is at www.techdump.org. The column I wrote last spring is at www.tinyurl.com/l3jgd6e.
-- Environmental Initiative, which brings together business, government and environmental stakeholders to address concerns and initiate solutions to be shared, will hold a Business & Environment Expo at the
Participants also will get insight into the
-- The summer is full of business volunteer-led runs, walks, rides and golf tournaments for charities. Good causes and they attract more volunteers and donations.
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