Myriad Mobile celebrated a milestone this summer — five years in business. While we know that five years is not an extraordinary amount of time, we also know that 50% of new businesses fail within the first five years. Knowing that, we figured it was a good time to reflect on our experiences.
First, a throwback photo.
Myriad’s first “official” office, North Dakota State University Research and Technology Park, 2012
Here’s a glimpse of what we look like today.
Myriad Mobile offices, 2016
You have to start somewhere, right?
Enjoy this trip down Myriad Mobile lane as some of our team members reflect on the past five years, and look at ahead to the next five.
Most memorable experience at Myriad.
“My most memorable experience is a combination of small experiences. I have really, truly enjoyed watching our company grow and mature. Sure, there have been growing pains but I’ve been impressed by how my teammates dig in, figure it out, and just do it. Through this experience I have gained a much deeper appreciation for businesses and organizations of all sizes and the amount of grit it takes to be successful. It’s not easy but it’s rewarding.” – Camille Grade, Marketing Manager
“I think the best experience is the closing of a large sale. It signifies that a client has seen our value proposition as better than our competitors. It’s a sign that we’re “getting our brand right”, and wisely leveraging our past experience to create our future. I’d also add, seeing people grow. We have a lot of people who are really developing their skill sets. It’s memorable to see people thrive in their positions.” – Mark Hempel, President & COO
“Jake riding through the office on a Honda moped-bike-thing.” – Austin Hanson, Director of Technology & Consulting
“My most memorable experience was probably before I started actually working here. I met Jake at an entrepreneurship club when I was a student NDSU. It was my senior year, but when Jake found out that I was learning iOS development he wouldn’t stop asking me to quit school and come work for him. I managed to finish my degree but in the end Jake got what he wanted and I’ve been at Myriad ever since!” – Kristian Lien, iOS Engineer
“Myriad has grown so much over the past 5 years from our days at the old Airport terminal building where Ryan, Jake and I shared the “executive office.” We had 25 employees at the time, and I had the privilege of being their first (and so far only) Executive Assistant. There were three desks at one end of the room, in a U-shape, we sat with our backs to each other. Visitors and clients had the choice of sitting on either a red leather recliner, or a yoga ball. There was a kitchen of sorts – it had a sink, but no hot water, so we were probably all at risk for typhoid, or some kind of nasty disease. There was LOTS of Foosball played, every day!” – Linda Anderson, Office Manager/HR
“I would say my most memorable moment was the first day I joined Myriad. I realized very quickly I was no longer working in the banking industry when in November pretty much everyone was walking around in shorts and flip flops (or bare feet). Three years later we have matured quite a bit but I still love the friendly atmosphere. “ – Jeremy Johnson, Partner
“Myriad has some pretty good company parties, which have led me to my most memorable experience. A couple years back we had a Christmas party; there was a variety of games, food, and people to talk to. I was walking around when I noticed a game happening in Galahad. I sat down and watched the game; the table was surrounded by my co workers. It isn’t so much the sight of what was happening that mattered, but rather what it represented. This room was filled with a bunch of wonderful, brilliant people who are willing to be themselves as opposed to some facade of straight-laced professionalism. Watching that game made me thankful for the coworkers I have and reassured me that I was working for the right company.” – Alex Larson, iOS Engineer
Standard issue startup foosball table, circa 2013
Standard issue startup soda cans, circa 2013. This is when we thought it was cool to stack soda cans in the window. <facepalm>
“I can’t narrow it down to one project because (in general) every new project I’m on becomes my favorite project. You start each new project more experienced than the last, face new challenges, and you get to try new ideas. Seeing how you have improved over the last project mixed with the ability to continue to improve your skill is why every project I’m put on because my favorite.” – Alex Larson, iOS Engineer
“I think our work with Minnesota Public Radio is my favorite at Myriad – not only have we worked with them for a few years, but they entrusted us with developing a brand new radio app with all sorts of new tech including Apple CarPlay and wearables! Our team had a lot of fun working playing with new technologies and I think they knocked it out of the park.” – Jake Joraanstad, Co-founder/CEO
“My favorite project was Edfiniti, mostly because of my knowledge of the ed-tech market; and the founders, Matt and Fred, are so authentic.” – Mark Hempel, President & COO
“I really enjoyed working on the Midco app because it was something that I knew I would be able to use personally. The Midco team was great to work with and their new branding was a designer’s dream to be able to implement.” – Shannon Beckermann, UX/UI Designer
One of our first employees, Conor, staffing a booth at Oracle in 2013. Before we were Myriad Mobile, we were Myriad Devices.
Jake Joraanstad trying out Google Glass, 2013
How has Myriad grown and developed over the past 5 years?
“It’s attracted the right team. That’s the essential element of our success. Our team really doesn’t have any weak links.” – Mark Hempel, President & COO
“I see us expanding from a Midwest-focus to a national, maybe even global, focus while maintaining the Midwest values that make us a reliable and down-to-earth company to work with.” – Nathan Joraanstad, iOS Engineer
“I think the team has matured and grown together in a big way. We still like to have fun, be curious, and try new things but we do so in a way that helps a business run and grow. It’s exciting to see new technologies come in and watch us be the first to develop certain innovations.” – Peter Schott, Partner
“Well, we have a capable leadership team which I think is the best thing that’s happened to us over the last 5 years. We went from wingin’ it to planning and executing. Like a lot of small businesses, we still do some wingin’ it, but our clients and team will be happy to know it’s a healthy amount now!” – Jake Joraanstad, Co-founder & CEO
One time we visited Google, 2013
Ryan Raguse and Jake Joraanstad, Fargo Monthly Magazine, 2014
Photo credit: J. Alan Paul Photography
Where will Myriad go in the next 5 years?
“If Jake can get ahold of a used spaceship, probably on a company trip to the moon. In all seriousness, I think in five years we’ll still be helping businesses solve their functional problems through great, intuitive solutions. We’ll probably be doing more consulting-heavy work, and depending on where technology goes, maybe we’ll be evaluating the ‘Mobile’ moniker in our brand. The possibilities are wide-open!” – Amanda Hanson, Mobile Strategist Lead
“We’ve got such a great upside it’s hard to say. I know one thing, our leadership team is committed to building one of the best businesses in the Midwest, and I think we’re primed to do so. Inventive technology is what we’re good at, so that means some amazing things are ahead. It’s going to be a crazy ride for sure.” – Jake Joraanstad, Co-founder & CEO
“Next five years, ah yes, the big question. The least I know is that we will continue to serve the world with tech innovations. I’m not sure many people realize this, but in agriculture, we are actually changing the technology landscape of an entire industry. Clients are excited about the direction we’re going. We are well suited for our team of expert executors to execute.” – Ryan Raguse, Co-founder & Chairman
We owe a big thank you to our clients, our team, and our community for supporting us throughout the past five years. Stay tuned for the next five!
And yes, we got our work done too. A lot of really cool work.
Myriad Mobile office, 2016
P.S. – TAKE PICTURES OF THE EARLY DAYS AND SAVE THEM! We were unable to locate most pictures from 2011 and only a few from 2012. This is the earliest picture we could find in our archives.
Jake Joraanstad receiving the InnovateND In the Zone award, 2012
Read our media release.