This month, I sat down with Barry Schwartz, CEO of web service firm Rusty Brick and founder of Search Engine Roundtable.
His career began at age 14 when he joined his twin brother in starting a software development business. Their unofficial business started with local and small businesses by helping their businesses become more efficient through their custom software. From there, RustyBrick has evolved and grown to the business it is today.
In this episode, we discuss what drives his business, challenges post-pandemic, and his prediction of upcoming trends in the industry.
The Beginning of RustyBrick
Barry told me his New York-based company started with a simple division of labor, he would talk to clients and his twin brother did all of the software development. Specifically, his brother gave him the instruction to say “yes” to everything the clients would ask for because they would find a way to get it done. This simple instruction worked well for them as they grew.
To this day, they have done no online marketing and most of their business has come from word of mouth and people seeing what they build for the community. They build everything from novelty apps to highly advanced ecommerce software with the main objective of making life more efficient.
Working through a Pandemic
It can be tough working with family but the way they make it work is by having Barry’s twin brother make the technology decisions and he makes the business decisions. Through the pandemic they had to make many decisions regarding the business and what would be best for their employees.
Prior to the pandemic they were an in-person company, but since then have become more flexible by giving employees the option to continue to work remotely from home. Another part of the business they had to address was trust. Once the pandemic began, their employees began to worry about whether or not they would lose their jobs or their pay would decrease. Barry instilled trust in his employees by letting them know even if the company did not earn any money, they would still receive their full salary.
Lauren teamed up with them to raise money for the school by setting up sponsor packages for each part of the hike. Once she was back home, she Luckily, RustyBrick did not lose much business and everyone was able to continue working through the pandemic, but giving his employees the reassurance that they would still be getting paid through unprecedented times was very important to him. Keeping his word and keeping his employees happy creates good code which creates happy customers.
As for trends in the software development industry, Barry thinks home automation, search and visual search, and electronic vehicles will be some of the main trends. He loves seeing how technology can integrate your work life and home life to make things more efficient overall.
There’s So Much More…
Through this episode, Barry has great perspective as a business owner and how he has learned to become more flexible and gives great advice for those who are interested in software development. Listen to the full episode to hear it all.
Want more from Barry?
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About The Agency Scoop
Each episode, we tackle a specific topic with another friend from Cypress North or pull in leaders from other companies. We’ll chat about what’s helping our agency grow, how we work with clients, things that bring us joy, and even the challenges we face. Please subscribe on your favorite podcast player to follow along!