Happy 20th Anniversary Roth Staffing. Join us as we celebrate the memories and milestones that have occurred over the course of the last two decades. This week’s memory is courtesy of Ben Roth, Founder & CEO of Roth Staffing Companies, L.P.
It was 1999 and we had been open for 5 years. At the time, our headquarters was located in Brea, California. We had been off to a crazy start since launching the business in 1994 and we had submitted our nomination to Inc. magazine for the “Inc. 500” ranking. I knew we would make the list but I had no idea where we would rank.
I was always one of those kids who couldn’t wait to see how I did on a test or was antsy to see the list of athletes who made the team. So, of course, I was anxious to hear where we ranked on the Inc. list. We had something special going in our favor … our numbers were staggering. During our fifth year of operation, our sales had grown by 20,332% without any acquisitions or need for outside capital investments.
I remember being surprised when a call came into the office from Inc. magazine. On the telephone was a writer who congratulated us and said he wanted to visit for a few days and write an article about us for the magazine. I asked where we were ranked and he said, “You were ranked #1!”
I walked out of my office and stood in the hallway. I literally had chills running down my spine. I remember telling the corporate coworkers with offices near mine about the news. As you can imagine, the excitement was unbelievable. Being ranked #1 as the fastest growing privately-held company in the United States was a huge achievement!
Years later, I was invited to a national “Inc. 500” conference celebrating the first 25 years of the award. I was asked to participate on a panel comprised of four #1 ranked companies that had extremely high percentages of growth. During the panel discussion, one of the entrepreneurs stated that all entrepreneurs and everyone on the panel built their companies to sell; the end game is monetization of the business. I countered that statement with my position that has evolved through the years. At first, that was the goal; but as I realized what our company was becoming, a company of pride and purpose, as well as a platform for doing good things in people’s lives, it had become bigger than my own personal self-interest. It became more about the journey and the people than a terminating capital transaction.
Today, everyone still has the opportunity to be #1. A coworker or a team may take pride in their achievements of the past or in the future of being the best, fastest, largest or #1 within in the company in performance. There is always something special found in the recognition of being the absolute best in any endeavor. Chills are not exclusive and certainly not overrated!