Since Fourscore sat down with Curt Sardeson in 2018, his company Open Sky Group has more than doubled its number of employees and experienced a 160% increase in revenue. Currently, Open Sky Group employs over 110 people and operates in five countries globally.
“We’re really hitting our stride after 10 years and a lot of trial and error,” Curt says. He attributes much of the growth to a goal he set a decade ago.
“I wanted to make this a great place to work. That meant making culture and clients our number one priorities,” he explains. Open Sky Group executes on this goal the moment a new employee walks in the door. Their thorough onboarding process covering each department includes a 90-minute meeting with Curt, where he shares the company’s values and vision and enjoys face-to-face time with each person who works there.
Curt says being strategic and intentional about who is promoted to management is also essential to keeping Open Sky Group a great place to work.
“It’s key to make sure the folks that manage other people are doing it in a way that’s consistent and follows our core values,” he says. Curt coaches the managers, placing a high priority on listening. He encourages leaders in the company to make adjustments based on what they hear and not to get stuck in ruts. Curt says this willingness to evolve based on feedback has been crucial to the employee experience and, ultimately, the company’s success.
He also encourages candor in communication at all levels of the company, wanting employees to have just as much freedom to be honest with their supervisors as their peers. Curt tries to lead by example with his personal communications, including issuing a company-wide email every Friday praising specific employees for accomplishments and wins that week. These weekly shoutouts emphasize the “culture of helpfulness” he’s developed at Open Sky Group.
“It takes a community. It doesn’t matter what your job is here – there’s an unspoken rule that if you can help, you help, regardless of if you’ve worked here five years or five weeks.”
He is grateful for the help he’s received from Fourscore each step of the way.
“As we’ve had this incredible growth and taken more risks with bigger contracts and more global work, Fourscore has always delivered the expertise we needed,” Curt says. He also appreciates the personal approach Jesse takes with clients.
“We didn’t want a transactional relationship with a law firm. We really wanted a partnership, and we’ve been able to maintain that with Jesse and his team,” he explains.
Looking ahead, Curt hopes to venture deeper into robotics and artificial intelligence for his customers, increasing the amount of output per human by automating tedious tasks. Curt’s confidence in the future was bolstered by the obstacles he witnessed his company – and others – overcome through the pandemic.
“Starting in early 2020, we had to make decisions we’d never had to make before, which really pushed all of us. I think we are going to be much better because of it. I have nothing but tremendous optimism due to what the human spirit has accomplished.”
To learn more, visit OpenSkyGroup.com.