Finding ways to make things better always has been a theme in Omri Kohl’s life. Growing up, he was busy building things and discovering creative ways to bring his ideas to life. In adulthood, his passion for problem-solving and innovation manifested in the form of several small businesses, which was where he fell in love with data. As an entrepreneur, Kohl was fascinated by data and how it could be used to make his businesses better. In 2009, this fascination grew into a business of its own, when Kohl co-founded Pyramid Analytics.
Based in Amsterdam and with offices across the globe including in Bellevue, Pyramid Analytics is the provider of BI Office, a business analytics and visualization software platform designed to transform the culture of businesses and organizations through the analysis of data. Pyramid Analytics’ mission is to deliver data and analytics in a way that empowers businesses and organizations from the inside out.
“We’re not selling a technology solution,” said Kohl, who also is the company’s CEO. “We’re interested in changing company culture in their approach to data.”
By changing the way businesses and organizations access, consume, and present their data, Kohl said businesses can not only grow stronger, but smarter, too.
And Pyramid Analytics itself is experiencing a period of growth. Kohl, along with his wife and his two kids, recently relocated to the area from Tel Aviv so he could be closer to the company’s Bellevue office, which has been operational for several years. Now on the Eastside, Kohl said his focus will be on growing Pyramid Analytics’ U.S. footprint — but he’s in no hurry to rush the process. “We are longtime entrepreneurs,” Kohl said. “We don’t look for quick turnaround. At the end of the day, we’re trying to build a very big, sustainable business.”
With his experience as an entrepreneur, Kohl is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to tips for running a successful business, and at the heart of it all, he said there’s one thing that matters most.
“It’s all about people,” Kohl said. “In the past 20 years, I’ve seen companies with fantastic products but horrible people.” Kohl said bringing the right personalities into the workplace is paramount to a business’ success because a business can only be as strong as the people behind it. When looking to build a strong team, Kohl said, there are a few key characteristics you should look for in both your employees and yourself:
- Get great people who are smarter than you. Attract people who know more than you and can execute. Also, make sure you’re attractive to your employees before anything else.
- Be a good listener. You brought on smart people; now listen to what they have to say.
- Be able to make decisions. You hired staff and they gave you their road maps, opinions, and ideas. Now you need to know how to make a decision and act on it.
This article originally appeared in the February 2017 issue of “425 Business.”