Whence the Name?

Aug 31, 2022
Kate Walton
Newsletter

Hello from Steyer, where the wild ride continues. Widespread layoffs, budget cuts, and budget freezes have made for a difficult summer in the tech sector. We are bobbing and weaving as any agency must in the face of client-side churn: our operations team is laser-focused on tending to our current engagements, and our sales team is pounding the proverbial pavement, uncovering new business needs at a pace that we hope will enable us to at least remain at our current size.

In the midst of all this activity, we are also keeping up, as best we can, with our involvement in the content community. At one recent gathering, I was asked by a student, “How did Steyer get its name?” It was a delight to respond, in part because there aren’t very many easy questions to answer right now, but mainly because it gave me a chance to talk about our founder, Marty Steyer.

Marty, who retired seven years ago, freeing him up to write the poetry that is his passion, began his career as a programmer writer. In the mid-90s, clients started asking him if he could find them “more Marty Steyers,” meaning more people who could create technical documentation as strong as his. So, he founded Steyer Associates, a contracting business that grew by word of mouth alone for many, many years.

I had the opportunity to work for Marty—first as a recruiter, then as his general manager, and finally as his CEO—before buying the company from him in 2017. At that time, we changed the name from Steyer Associates to Steyer Content, to reflect that we had built a substantial managed work practice, alongside our contracting (or T&M) business.

But keeping the “Steyer” part of the name was a no-brainer. For many people in the content community—talent and clients alike—Steyer stands for two things: caring and excellence. Our job now is to be the custodians of that hard-earned legacy.

Some days, that goes better than others. With an increasingly diverse client base, talent in more than 20 states, and a wide range of engagement types, there’s an inherent complexity to the business that didn’t exist when it revolved around one principal client, one primary skill set, and a pure contracting model. But as we pursue our mission to support as many good jobs as possible, the core values of caring and excellence that built Steyer 1.0 remain our North Star.

Please feel free to write to me (kwalton@steyer.net) anytime, to let us know how we’re doing.

Thanks for reading,
Kate

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash