Practice Perfect - Sept/Oct 2017

THE PRACTICE PERFECT ORIGIN STORY How I Went From Tinkerer to Expert to Founder

I’ve been working with computers for almost as long as I can remember. At 15 years old, I was curious about all the new personal computers that had everybody abuzz. So, I stepped into my local computer store — one of the first ones around — to check it out. There, in front of me, was the Tandy TRS-80 Microcomputer System, complete with a full QWERTY keyboard and a whopping 4 kilobytes of RAM. If you look it up nowadays, I’m sure you’ll laugh. It’s a bulky hunk of grey plastic that couldn’t even display lowercase letters, much less actual graphics, but to me, it was a revelation. I picked up the manual for the machine and started playing around with it, gradually learning the ins and outs of its complex software systems. Right away, I was hooked.

to fix problems, along with various programming jobs. We ended up getting hired by an owner of a local rehabilitation clinic who needed some extremely specific programming work done for his business. Though that kind of test was new to us, my team and I learned as we went and built the solution he required. Later, the owner merged his company with a bunch of other rehabilitation clinics, which were all later swallowed up by an even larger company. Throughout all the transitions, I was kept along for the ride. So, there I was, director of admin and IT for 65 rehab clinics. But suddenly, in the late ’90s, a massive corporation moved in and started shaking up our processes.

Programming is an incredibly daunting skill to beginners. Back then, especially, it was anything but easy to accomplish even the simplest tasks on a computer without experience. But from the outset, it was clear I had a knack for it. I spent hours and hours navigating the system, using the archaic and arcane BASIC programming language. I’m grateful to have gotten into the field so early. When you’re working with such a rudimentary language, you really need to

master your fundamentals. Whenever I could, I would hone my skills. After a time, I was working alongside the computer shop’s owner here and there, doing odd programming jobs. What was once a hobby evolved into a passion. I had an affinity for the work, and a few years down the road, I found myself operating a small computer repair shop. We’d repair people’s machines and dive into their operating systems

“Throughout every step of my career, I’ve coupled my technical expertise with a knack for working with people.”

Unfortunately, this particular company didn’t have the best reputation, nor was I a big fan of the new management or the general direction we were going. So, I committed to getting them through the changes of Y2K and parted ways shortly after. I founded Practice Perfect, and I’ve never looked back. Throughout every step of my career, I’ve coupled my technical expertise with a knack for working with people. Today, my favorite part about the work I do is the clients I get to interact with. I get to learn about their situations and find unique solutions to their most nagging problems. It’s been a long journey to get where I am, but I’ve loved every step of the way. Each day, I get to come into the office, alongside a team I’ve known for years and communicate back and forth with clients to overcome new challenges. I couldn’t ask for more. -Steven Presement 3

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