In 1994, while students at Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, Mike Dickey and Troy Kelley started an initiative to duplicate and distribute Debian Linux CDs. This initiative was initially funded by Harvey Taggart, the father of Mike and Troy’s friend, Don Taggart. Though there was no lack of passion for the work, they realized quickly that they may have gotten in a little over their heads. They had to finish their degrees, they were both married, and they had jobs at the university. So, for the time being the initial funding was returned; the sweat and “glory” of entrepreneurship just had to wait.
Years went by as Mike and Troy earned their diplomas and got “real jobs” to provide for their families. But whatever that drive is that keeps entrepreneurial dreams alive, it kept its traction. There was unsettled ground ahead, and they were determined to be the ones to settle it.
By late 1999, Don had returned from working in New Zealand and Australia, Mike and his family had returned from a job in Oregon, and Troy was settled into his job in Indianapolis. Under these conditions the drive became unavoidable, and thoughts of “what kind of company would we start?” began filling the empty spaces of the founders’ thoughts. At that time, dot-coms were a dime-a-dozen, and were more than well-funded. But the idea that kept coming up was a service-oriented technology firm – an IT consultancy. So, in 2000, Don, Troy, and Mike began dreaming about what a great consulting firm looks and, most importantly, acts like. On August 16, 2000, E-gineering, LLC became an entity in the State of Indiana. During that time, Troy introduced Andy Peterson to Mike and Don. It seemed clear that the “fit” and the timing was Providential. Just a few short weeks later, Andy became available and the company had its fourth owner.
All of the owners had some experience with (and in) consulting firms. So initially, they were driven by contrasts: if they ever built a consulting firm, they wouldn’t do things that way; they would do them this way. There were many such situations that were becoming the negative space on the canvas, defining the firm. But what was needed was the more positively-stated dreams and visions and strategies for a company. They knew they couldn’t sustain a company merely by not doing things this way or that. They needed direction of how E-gineering would do things – how would E-gineering define itself?
At the heart of the vision for the company was: from top (vision, strategy, initiatives, and goals) to bottom (coding and billing time), how do you run a company that glorifies God and adheres to the golden rule? Why weren’t service companies like that seen more often? So they moved forward with the clear conviction that if you always do the right thing, then everything will work out for the best.
The company mantra for those early years was “integrity, excellence, and people” – and it has never changed.
In 2003, an opportunity arose for Nick Taylor to join the company. It was clear that he was the perfect fit for E-gineering’s business development needs. With vision and goals aligned to the other owners (both personally and professionally), Nick became an owner shortly thereafter – filling the void in what was lacking at the ownership level.
Having ownership in place that guides and financially backs the type of company E-gineering was striving to be, the company has since focused on hiring talented individuals who personify “the E-g way”. The result – an extremely strong team who enjoys and supports one another as they go about servicing clients’ technology needs in a way that they believe is right.
If you’d like to have an even-deeper glimpse into who we are, take a few minutes to read this Merry Christmas and Thank You message to employees.