The Seven Year Anniversary of Nexus PMG: As Told by Roshan Vani

After three years of working together in Saudi Arabia, Paul, Ben and I made the decision to take a leap of faith and form Nexus PMG. We recognized that we each brought something different to the table. Individually, we had our strengths. Collectively, we were a nerd force to be reckoned with. 

We dove in head first with a teamwork mentality. Everything was a collaboration. The company was our baby, and we all wanted to be involved with everything. This made the growing pains very real. Letting go was hard, but when we did, we got three times more work done and were able to migrate into our natural roles even further. 

Those strengths we bet on in the beginning have blossomed into a synergistic relationship that allows us to level-up as individuals and align our business with our values. I think about how Ben, a true visionary, has evolved to sell our company vision thanks to his intuition and genuine nature. This makes him a great CEO. Paul is a financial contract wizard and as CFO his focus on financial planning put the company in a very healthy position to weather the recent pandemic. He’s calm, cool, and collected, which is everything I am not. 

Meanwhile, I’m completely content focusing on implementing the company vision, optimizing operations, getting things done, and overall learning the COO role. It really makes me wonder why people think COOs make good CEOs. I cannot imagine doing the job of Ben or anyone else on the team. I also have no idea how solo founders do it. Thinking about doing everything overwhelms me. We’ve each got our roles to play here, and together we can focus on doing them well.  

Recently I found myself nodding in agreement when listening to Mo Vargas talk about finding the right people to scale the business. When you have the right team, there aren’t any gaps and everyone can excel. Bringing in Steve Roberts and Chris Hart rounded out our team in a big way, and growing the team from there has been an amazing experience. To look back on the 34 people that make us even stronger is sometimes hard to internalize. Creating jobs is one of the single best feelings. Ensuring we keep winning work to support our team is also the most terrifying—and motivating.

Here’s a picture of Ben signing our first major client, Samsung Engineering, in February 2014 (before kids) next to me with my son (one of two kids) with our new Dallas office signage last month. A glimpse into the seven-year roller coaster that I would jump on again in a heartbeat.

Something that is very clear to me now is the value of our bond as a team. Jigar Shah talks about the importance of aligning with the right people and having a long working history as a team in his Bigger Than Us interview, and I have to agree. The fact that we had a proven track record of working together in a high-pressure corporate setting prior to starting our business gave us the trust that comes out of facing challenges together. That got us through the startup friction, and through the first eight months when we didn’t issue ourselves paychecks.

No matter what, we support each other’s visions.

Even in moments when we may not have been fully aligned, we never stopped one another from trying something out. We were generally willing to give each other space with an air of “give it a shot and see if it works”. That blind support makes us great and cannot be manufactured. It’s still alive today, and it’s been invaluable in helping us innovate and align our business with our values. We need room to test out our ideas in order to enjoy what we do. 

Reflecting on this journey wouldn’t be complete without recognizing my wife. Manisha is my rock, and our family is what brings me the joy and fulfillment I need to pursue this dream. 

When I think about the vision that got us here, it wasn’t that we wanted to be corporate. We just wanted to work hard and do right by our clients. As we’ve developed as a company, the mindset has shifted from “we’re figuring things out” to further leaning into what makes us unique. Our expectation of Nexus PMG today is as much about building a better world as it is about building better people. We’ve built a business that we’re proud of today that will improve the planet for future generations. Thanks to Ben, Paul, and the team that’s grown from our crazy idea, I can say that I enjoy what I do. That is a truly amazing feeling.

Roshan Vani