What a turn out! It was awesome to see how many people were interested in visiting the new Couto Solutions’ office. What was it that got everyone to trek out to the Cal Poly Tech Park on the outer edge of campus? Was it the emails that were sent? Was it the tweets that were tweeted? Was it the intrigue of the super cool conference room that brought everyone out? Well I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that the good turnout was all because of the supportive nature of folks in SLO County who make an honest effort to show their support to fellow SLO County businesses.
Couto Solutions moved into the new space on April 4th, 2011. When our CEO, Justin Couto, decided to host May 25th, 2011 Softec Open House event over a year ago, we all thought we would have plenty of time to get things “dialed in.” Not a chance. With a busy work schedule as it is, Justin and I spent many, many, and I mean many late nights at the office organizing, rearranging, straightening, then organizing again and re-rearranging and straightening what we thought was already straight. Weekends were spent shopping Amazon for cables, cables and more cables. Billy Souza, our CTO, made the trip from the Central Valley on multiple occasions to work on the data center and to get the monitors mounted and operating throughout the office. Even our software engineers and designers weren’t spared when it came to getting the office ready. Many of them pitched in to clean up the 1/8 inch of construction dust that was layered throughout the entire building the morning of the event. Pulling this together was pure teamwork through and through!
When the open house attendees started to arrive they were greeted in the first level lobby and conference room by Couto Solutions’ real rock star, Jeff Hodde. Jeff provided us with an expertly performed acoustic guitar performance that added just the right flavor to the event. Speaking of flavor, some scrumptious bites and plenty of cold drinks kept people mingling and talking the first part of the evening until Justin was ready to talk a bit about Couto Solutions and its origins. Being a pretty mellow guy, he surprised the audience by expressing his happiness about completing this project with a loud “WOOOOHOOOO!” to get things started. Justin’s speech about how far the company has come and where he plans to take it next was both insightful and motivating. Justin showed off his imaginative skills with the SkiSkate prototype he created decades ago and shared with everyone the lessons he’s learned as an entrepreneur. Justin’s an incredibly driven guy with a big vision for Couto Solutions’ future, so check back with us periodically to see what we’re up to!
After the networking and presentation that followed, everyone made their way to the second floor and the true star of the show, the Couto Solutions office where Justin demonstrated the features of our aforementioned super cool conference room. A lot of thought was put into the conference room features to make it attractive and, most importantly, functional. The Couto Solutions logo that is imbedded in the center of the 12 person table looks cool on its own. However, it really flaunts its functionality when its guitar rises up out of the table with a click of a emote to revealing its data ports, HDMI ports, and power outlets for convenient laptop hookup. To top that, Justin lowered the large electric illuminated glass boards that drop out of the ceiling in front of each monitor which will allow presenters to draw on top of websites being displayed and discussed. For this day however, our resident artist, Anthony Harris depicted the Couto Solutions offices, past and present, on one of the glass boards. And, yes, he drew this by hand.
At the end of the evening, guests were encouraged to explore the office and ask any questions they may have. Most people asked about the floor, wondering if it was carbon fiber. Actually, our floors are ordinary porcelain in a not so ordinary striated 12x24 inch tiles giving a neat carbon fiber look. Also piquing interest was the materials our desks and tables are made off. The entire office is furnished with Corian tops in “Earth” which gives the office the smooth, clean, uniform look Justin envisioned. Another curiosity needing satisfying was the way the workstation desks were mounted. Let me tell you, it took a lot of metal, bolts, sweat and tears but the floating desks look incredible!
Once the crowd made their way home and the wine cups and paper plates were picked up a sense of pride set in immediately followed by exhaustion. It took a lot of effort and team work to put together a wonderful open house just as it took a lot of effort and team work to elevate Couto Solutions to the company it is today. For those of you who attended, we are grateful for your enthusiastic support of our company and your participation in Softec. For those of you who couldn’t make it, our doors are always open to you if you want to get to know more about our company or just want to check out our new office. Our company is still growing and we’ve got big plans for the future! Keep us on your radar as we have big things to announce in the coming year.