Think back to the offer letter you received for your current position. More likely than not, it was delivered via email, just as with most business communications today. Given this channel’s ubiquity, the act of sending and receiving that email has become so routine the importance of the offer letter itself can sometimes be overlooked.
But the thing is, the offer letter is so much more than just a requisite part of the hiring process. It’s the summation of the first experiences a new hire has with a company. Whether that experience is truly ineffable, merely mundane, or coolly joyless, it sets the tone for the relationship you will have with your employer. First impressions are lasting ones. Which brings me to the email security firm Agari.
Today is my first at Agari, and I’ve been asked to blog about the five reasons I chose to tackle the role of Chief Product Officer. Recalling that all-important offer letter is probably the best way to explain what made that decision such an easy one.
Boring people make for boring companies. Selfish people make for cold ones. Which is why I can tell you right off the bat the number one reason I joined Agari is the people. Wickedly talented and outrageously friendly, this is a tribe of trailblazers that is focused on taking Agari to the next, next. You get energized just being around them.
It’s a well-known business tenet that culture is forged and personified at the top, cascades through the company, and streams into the marketplace. And Agari’s personal handling of something most companies view as a matter of protocol, the extension of that offer letter, is indicative of the Agari culture and the thirst to do things differently.
I kid you not, here’s what happened. I was in Palo Alto meeting with a Agari investor as part of the last round of what I found to be a deliberate and thoughtful interviewing process. The conversation was going well, but about 45 minutes in, this investor starts checking and sending text messages at different points in our discussion. Finally, he halts our conversation, with: “I think you’d be a great fit. Someone is here to see you.”
He then walks out of the glass-walled conference room and over to a nearby elevator. Out walks Agari founder and CEO Patrick Peterson. The two men join me in the conference room, and before I can get out more than, “Good to see you, Patrick,” he personally hands me my offer.
He not only expressed his thanks, but reiterated his vision for the company, how I would fit into the manifestation of that vision, and then closed with, “You’re the guy. I want to build Agari for the future with you. Let’s go do it.”
Unorthodox? Unquestionably. Audacious? Absolutely. Decisive? Hell yeah. Agari’s entire culture focuses on delivering successful outcomes for employees, customers, and the security ecosystem as a whole. The way Patrick delivered my offer letter made me feel special, and is the stuff of corporate legends. It also provides a peek behind the curtains into how the company makes decisions, builds products, treats people, and delivers a unique cultural experience that I’m still sharing with anyone who will listen.
It’s an approach that has been carefully cultivated for a decade now, and it shows. Ten years ago, the biggest bank in the world became Agari’s first customer—and remains one today. That’s because Agari wasn’t just the first to recognize the need for a new kind of email security, it had the vision to see it as a technology category all its own.
Unlike large companies working to mitigate email threats as just another line of business, Agari understood the vulnerabilities inherent in email created the need for a company dedicated exclusively to solving this monumental problem. And it has led the fight ever since.
It doesn’t hurt that Agari’s market opportunity is enormous. In the first six months of this year, more than $500 million has been invested in the cybersecurity industry, and Agari leads the fastest-growing segment. Agari has gained tier-one capital precisely because of its differentiated approach to solving a problem that can cripple businesses and leave financial lives in ruins.
I was on a call today with a woman who was victimized by a romance scammer who leveraged email to con her out of more than $80,000. Another victim at a South Carolina company paid $1 million on what turned out to be a fraudulent email sent by cybercriminals impersonating a long-time vendor.
When you factor in $300 million-a-month losses from business email compromise (BEC) scams, and the advanced email offensives launched by foreign operatives aiming to sew division and threaten national security, you realize something big. The opportunity to build the technologies that deep-six these dangers is more than just energizing. It’s the chance to protect digital communications to ensure humanity prevails over evil. And how do you top that?
As companies continue to migrate their email systems to the cloud, securing this ecosystem will only grow more urgent. And here again, Agari is leaving everyone else in the dust. The Secure Email Cloud goes far beyond the basic security controls built into cloud platforms, helping to prevent email attacks that already average $2 million in losses per incident.
When you consider that 75% of the world’s data already resides in the cloud, and that 90% of businesses have moved at least some portion of their operations to the cloud, you get a sense of just how important the cloud security landscape is rapidly becoming.
I can’t imagine a more meaningful revolution to join. And thinking back to that offer letter, and the people, vision, and culture behind it, I also can’t imagine a better company to lead it.
To learn more, access our official announcement on Ramon Peypoch’s new role as Chief Product Officer here.