Twenty three years ago, 15 people lost their jobs. Although they may not have known it at the time, this ending was also the beginning. On June 19th, 1992 those same 15 people decided to start their own company and CD Group, Inc. was founded. In celebration of CD Group’s 23rd anniversary and the amazing twenty three years to come, I interviewed CD Group’s President and founder, Larry Campbell.
When I first asked Larry if he would mind being interviewed, always willing to help, he agreed but laughed a little in skepticism that anyone would want to read it. Being fully confident that I’m not the only history lover, I begin.
What was the inspiration for founding CD Group in 1992?
“We wanted to create a company of partners where we all worked together for the common good.”
What was the catalyst or event that turned your inspired ideas into a reality?
“Some of us had worked at a previous company that let us all go together, so we began on Day 1 with 15 people.”
How did you feel that first year?
“Great, we all did anything needed. I remember, everyone staying late, unloading the used furniture truck and setting up cubicles together. We truly created a team approach.”
What were some of CD Group’s very first goals?
“‘To expect to win.’ For example, we had a committee who said that we could not afford 401k matching at first, but we said if we expect to win, let’s act like winners and we put [401k matching] in.”
What are some of your favorite memories at CD Group?
“We won a big contract at a Fortune 100 company but when we went to meet with their team an executive their asked for the phone number of one of our female employees during the meeting. He did not ask that of any of the other employees so I pulled the team and sent them back to the office. On the way back to the office, I got a flat tire on 185 so by the time I got back to the office I was hot and mad. The team was worried about losing a big contract but I reminded them of our focus; a contract would never be important enough to put one of our teammates in a bad situation. The team saw that we were a team who took care of each other. This event created a true sense that we were one team.”
Then Larry added as an afterthought, “Oh and the company replaced the executive and we got the contract after all.”
I’ve only been at CD Group a little over a year, but there is definitely still a very true sense of team. Where do you see CD Group 23 years from now?
“Same but different; same focus on teammates and clients with all new technology. The ‘what’ never changes while the ‘how’ will always change. CD Group is and always be about helping each other, clients and mates.”