As CEO of FifthVantage, Matt Domo assists B2B software companies to translate complex technology goals into strategic plans, architecture, and execution plans that enable sustainable double-digit growth. Matt helps his client companies benefit from massive market changes in Digital Transformation. The work includes transitioning his client’s software to SAAS delivery models, adopting Cloud Computing technologies effectively, optimizing their development teams for Digital delivery, and adopting new technology like the latest advancements in the Amazon Web Services Cloud, Machine Learning, or the Internet of Things.
Matt Domo is a technology executive with over 25 years of experience in cloud computing, SAAS applications, e-commerce, and infrastructure solutions at the enterprise, mid-market, and start-up levels. As one of the founders of Amazon Web Services (AWS), Matt is a pioneer in the cloud computing space. He has created nine cutting-edge cloud products and seven e-commerce website solutions that generated large revenue streams for Amazon, Microsoft, and Rackspace.
Matt has been recognized by USA Today as one of the “Top 9 Most Exciting Entrepreneurs of 2021” and as one of the “Top 50 Technology Leaders in the World” by Intercon the Internet Technology Conference. Matt is a member of Newsweek Expert Forum, a community for pioneering thinkers at the forefront of what’s happening now, where he publishes thought-provoking content on what’s important and relevant today in technology.
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Tell us a little bit about your current projects. What exciting milestone would you like to share with our readers? (Don’t hesitate to delve into your achievements, they will inspire the audience)
Matt Domo: We help B2B software companies transform complex technology goals into clear strategy, architecture & dev plans so they can achieve sustainable double-digit growth.
For example, we guided one of our long-term clients to become a SAAS first company through a technical transformation. We guided them to make decisions on what AWS cloud technologies to leverage versus what they build on their own, architecture decisions to achieve simplicity and scale, create a decision framework to make the most effective technology choices, and how to change their engineering culture to become SAAS first. They were successful with implementing these changes and became a public company in September. We are very happy for our client’s success and take satisfaction that we could help them exceed their goals.
Was there somebody in your life that inspired you to take that specific journey with your business?
Matt Domo: Two people in my life have provided me with the most inspiration. The first was a close friend who has been a lifelong entrepreneur. He built a successful company that connected college students with study abroad opportunities. He was wildly successful with his company and sold it for a large sum. He encouraged me to step away from the corporate world and follow my passion for teaching others how to succeed in their technology strategy.
The other person was my fantastic wife. She has been immensely supportive through all of the ups and downs. She encouraged me to follow my passion for building this business.
I would not be as happy or as successful without the influence of both of these people.
What are the most common mistakes you see entrepreneurs make and what would you suggest they do?
Matt Domo: The two most common mistakes entrepreneurs make are a lack of focus on what matters to their ideal customers and being adaptable enough to change when required. It is critical as an entrepreneur that you focus deliberately on what adds the most value to your clients instead of providing what you think they might need.
Don’t try to give solutions looking for a problem. Truly understand why your approach solves a problem or pain point for your customers. Adaptability allows entrepreneurs to adjust their approach, product, or services based on the feedback of their customers and markets. It is essential to change your approach when you need to do so to helo your client simply, reliably, and consistently solve their problems. Focus on the “why” you need to do something before the “how” to do it.
Resilience is critical in critical times like the ones we are going through now. How would you define resilience?
Matt Domo: In my opinion, resilience is the ability to push forward towards your goals even through adversity and believe in yourself. Anyone in business will experience failure or difficulty at some point in their career. It is essential to reflect on these situations and have faith that you will learn and be more successful moving forward.
In your opinion, what makes your company stand out from the competition?
Matt Domo: Our extended family and partners have a consistent track record of conceiving and growing cloud computing and SAAS products at a massive scale while creating large revenue streams. They have helped their companies pivot when necessary to make impactful changes sustainably and reliably. Our partners are experts in their fields who we trust and share our values with a consistent track record of providing value to our mutual clients.
You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success?
Matt Domo: The first character trait is authenticity. I am a friendly and caring person by nature. I am myself in all interactions and strive to help others achieve success in whatever they choose to do. The second trait is curiosity. I ask questions to learn more about situations, people, and problems, conscientiously seeking answers that will positively impact and help others and me to grow. Finally, I am data-driven. I strive to make decisions based on data objectively and without emotion. I do not focus on who presented the data and proposed solutions. I have found that focusing on the data for what it shows is the best way to inform decisions on the best method moving forward.
What have you learned about personal branding that you wish you had known earlier in your career?
Matt Domo: I have learned that your personal brand is how you demonstrate your value, skills, work passion, and character to the outside world. Working in the corporate world, I always focused on my brand internally and less on the outside world. Your personal brand has a tremendous impact on how people see you. Your personal brand increases both your in-person and online presence. Your online presence is significant at present due to the pandemic conditions. It is critical that you know how best to leverage your personal brand.
Your personal brand as a CEO helps position both you and your business. When your personal brand is associated with your business, you and your business will be set to become top of mind for the best product or service because you provided free value upfront.
How would you define “leadership”?
Matt Domo: It is critical for you to be mindful of how your leadership impacts others. Leadership is the art of being calm in a storm and helping others achieve their goals. Strong leadership allows others to become their best selves to accomplish what they believe they can’t do on their own.
Do you think entrepreneurship is something that you’re born with or something that you can learn along the way?
Matt Domo: From my experience, there are elements of entrepreneurship you were born with and those that you learn. Combining what has shaped you personally and professionally and what drives your inner self is also not rare. Every day, a new company is created, innovative ideas are put into practice, and success is achieved.
Successful entrepreneurs were born and grown to achieve their goals. The way entrepreneurs apply their passion, personal drive, traits, and desire to learn and grow is central to their success. Using your traits in the right space and manner is critical to entrepreneurial success.
What’s your favorite “life lesson” quote and how has it affected your life?
Matt Domo: My favorite life lesson quote is, “20 years from now, I want to regret what I did not what I didn’t do”. I am both curious and adventurous. I base my life lessons on experience and experiments. I strive to try new things and do new things in new ways. When I reflect on life, I tend to have the most angst based on things I didn’t try at least once.
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Matt Domo for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Matt Domo or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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