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In 1981 Jack and George’s ideas began their transformation into flesh and blood, and into metal and plastic. For 1981 the goal was to assemble an organization that would start producing revenue.
Safeguard was looking first at the bottom line. They wanted Novell to lay the foundation for a growing and profitable high tech company. Dolf and Pete were counting on Jack and George’s long and successful experiences in the minicomputer industry to make Novell profitable quickly. This goal affected the order in which products would be developed and brought to market: Quick things first.
Safeguard’s second focus was integrating a fruit of the computer age into their existing interests. As mentioned above,pg. 13,they wanted their Safeguard Business Systems sales force to have a high tech alternative to their existing paper-based One Write product—they wanted a way to sell computerized accounting. This goal encouraged the addition of a personal computer to Novell’s product line.
1981 would be a big year for Jack. He needed to finish building his founding team and build a company around that team. That company needed to define, design, manufacture, and sell profitable products within the year.
But this was no simple single-product company. Jack was assembling a comprehensive computer system manufacturer in a locale that had never seen any comprehensive system manufacturer before. His vision was large, and to make it happen would take all the Old West heroism he could muster from his Utah heritage.
George wanted to prove he was right. He had told the people at CalComp that minicomputer peripherals were the market to be in, and they had rejected him. Now Jack had come to him with a business plan that outlined a great way to get into that market. George’s goal was another winning company, and whether it was minicomputers or personal computers didn’t matter much. What was important was the peripherals business.
George could see that Jack had done his homework in terms of lining up people and making a plan. This would let him concentrate on arranging financing and fine-tuning the manufacturing process—his great loves. 1981 would be a great year.
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