Published: February 22, 2007
Peter Majkowski and his wife Barbara recently visited colleges with their son, Michael, a high school senior in the Lehigh Valley, and watched the talented young musician perform in a concert at one of the schools. When Majkowski routinely put in 12 hour days as regional vice president of a city financial firm five years ago, many experiences like this were lost. He is now the satellite manager of Essential Data Corp.’s Lehigh Valley office.
“What Essential Data has really done for me, is it allowed me to have both the time and the money to afford to send him on these programs,” Majkowski said of his son, who plays the trumpet and guitar.
While Majkowski still drives into the city twice a week to meet with clients, most of his work is near his home, something that is not unusual for an Essential Data executive.
In fact, the technical writing and consulting company’s founder and CEO Antoinette Allocca has been expanding her technical writing business toward its goal of becoming a national corporation. Allocca is managing to avoid time consuming road trips and long lines at airport security checkpoints by hiring satellite managers like Majkowski, who independently operate close to home in offices located in target states, and by staying in constant communication with them and valuable clients via a satellite phone system. Her strategy has allowed Essential Data to open offices in 30 states.
Essential Data Corp. (EDC) takes talented executives, who are feeling burned out and under-compensated in their jobs, and breathes new life into them by providing the opportunity to make presentations before top executives in some of the nation’s biggest firms, giving them the independence of setting their own hours for a comfortable work-life balance, and by paying them a salary that is significantly higher than the industry standard. Allocca said consultants and managers are paid up front, adding Essential Data’s managers, on average, quadruple their annual earnings within their first two years with the company.
“I couldn’t have gotten a better salary if I were running my own business,” Majkowski said.
But, then again, Majkowski said becoming a satellite manager for Essential Data is like starting your own business without investing your own hard earned money into the venture. “It gives you the enjoyment of the work you do and the feeling of freedom and empowerment from running your own business,” Majkowski said, “and you can avoid the risk but reap the rewards. Essential Data Corp. takes on the risk.”
Allocca said the playing field is tilted in her satellite managers’ favor from the start. “Clients are desperate for our services,” she said, “and there is not a lot of competition.”
EDC’s managers receive ongoing training, access to other managers, and support from EDC’s executive team, which includes Allocca, Chief Financial Officer Mark Greenspan and Vice President Tom Walsh, who works out of EDC’s corporate headquarters in Stamford, Conn. Once a week, EDC’s satellite managers participate in a teleconference with the entire team.
EDC’s rapid growth and nurturing of its talented employees has not gone unnoticed. The technical writing company has earned the Outstanding Employer Award and was recognized as one of the fastest growing women owned businesses from Working Woman Magazine in 1999. EDC has been featured over 25 times in national and international publications, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Der Spiegel and USA Today.