Meet Rich Yumul:
From Comic-Con to the USS Midway Museum, it’s highly likely that you have visited a website that Rich Yumul and his team at Sage Tree Solutions have created. Rich started his company (Sage Tree Solutions) out of a passion and desire to provide better website solutions and better customer service to business owners. His honest and transparent approach with his clients makes him stand out as a leader in his industry.
Keep reading to find out what motivates Rich as an entrepreneur as he shares his story and advice on running a business.
Sarah Nance: How did you chose the name of your business?
Rich Yumul: It’s the name of the street that I live on. It was really impressive having your business mailing address have the same name as your business, before Google maps.
Sarah Nance: What inspired you to create your company?
Rich Yumul: Craftsmanship. There were lots of examples of poorly executed web sites – poor design, poor engineering, and lots of unrealized potential. I thought I could do a better job, provide better service, so clients could stop wasting time & money on poor craftsmanship.
Sarah Nance: How and when did you start your business?
Rich Yumul: I was doing freelancing on the side and then in 2005 I started freelancing 100%. 2008 I started hiring people to help out with Sage Tree.
Sarah Nance: Tell me about your professional background and experience.
Rich Yumul: Started building web pages in 1991. One of my first projects was the KidSat project, led by Dr. Sally Ride at U.C.S.D. I helped build the website for the project, where a digital camera was put on the moon roof of the space shuttle. Then, kids in elementary schools across the nation were able to schedule when the camera should take a picture (via the web), and then they could see the resulting images after they were taken. It was really neat.
After U.C.S.D., I worked for 10 years developing web applications for a defense contractor, and started Sage Tree to do more commercial work in 2005.
Sarah Nance: What should your customers expect when they come to you?
Rich Yumul: They can expect to talk to somebody with deep experience in developing web sites and applications, an understanding of business, and always has their best interest at heart.
They should also know that we call it like it is. If their project/site is a ‘ugly baby’, we’ll have that conversation with them. We strive to be very transparent.
Sarah Nance: What has been the toughest lesson you have been taught about owning a business?
Rich Yumul: Managing people and the results for which they’re responsible.
Sarah Nance: What has been the most rewarding part of owning your own business?
Rich Yumul: Having the freedom to innovate.
Sarah Nance: What are some of your specific marketing strategies?
Rich Yumul: We provide free training sessions, we’re very involved in the development community and we also partner with other agencies & companies. I also do a fair amount of networking.
Sarah Nance: What is your target market?
– Medium to large size business without a strong web presence.
– Department heads at university (UCSD, USD, SDSU, etc)
– Non-profit organizations that need help w/ their online presence
Sarah Nance: Do you have any specific books, blogs or podcast that you recommend to other business owners?
– Anything from Seth Godin
– 5 Levels of Leadership – John Maxwell (and anything else from him)
Sarah Nance: Do you do much in person networking? If yes, what do you like and don’t like?
Rich Yumul: Yes
Like: Meeting people, the prospect of meeting somebody that can be your next big client.
Dislike: Having to give up my evenings with my family.
Sarah Nance: Has there been anyone in particular that helped motivate you to start your business?
Rich Yumul: Not so much…
Sarah Nance: What are your long-term goals for your business?
Rich Yumul: Build it so it’s self running and provides a stable base of income for my family.
Sarah Nance: How can people find you on social media?
Personal Twitter: @rich_yumul
Business Twitter: https://twitter.com/sage_tree