A Conversation With: Josh HinkleOwner and CEO, 2K Networking Inc.
Josh Hinkle, 39, acquired Harrisburg-based 2K Networking Inc. and became CEO in January.
He joined 2K in 2014 as director of business development and business initiatives. Prior to 2K, he was chairman of Adams County Connected, a community initiative to improve internet access in the county for the benefit of schools, government services and commerce.
Hinkle has completed coursework in business management, information technology management and a specialization in security at Lycoming and York colleges as well as the University of Maryland throughout his career.
He and his wife and two sons live in Upper Allen Township.
Q: What challenges have you faced in going from employee to boss?
A: I always had a leadership role in 2K, so I’ve been in a position trying to influence the day-to-day operations, specifically sales. I think the greatest challenge now is having accountability for every aspect of the business, every day. That alters the relationships with the rest of the staff. Managing the entire business has been one of those challenges. I think we’ve adapted well. I have a very different management style, and any time you go through that, people have to learn about your style and your expectations and how you manage, as well as the dynamics of a different relationship, coming from the CEO versus director of business development.
A lot of your past experience is with nonprofit organizations. What have you brought from that to your new job?
Charitable organizations are known for having incredibly dedicated teams and volunteers. Those team members, those volunteers are there because they believe in that mission and they tend to work tirelessly to support that mission. One of the aspects I bring is that understanding of how powerful it is, that if you have a vision and a mission, people buy into it. We shouldn’t just be coming to work and showing up and treating it as a job. We should feel passionate about it.
That mission and vision is going to take us to where we’re going as a company — it’s critical to our success. We’re going to unapologetically come into the market stronger than we did and let people know we’re here. Nonprofits cherish every dollar of revenue they bring in and they have to maximize their services for the people they serve. Our revenue comes from our customers and we want them to value our service as much as someone who is donating it. We want them to believe in the work we do for them and that it really has a return in their business.
When it comes to strategic planning, where is the very first place you start?
We have to thoroughly understand a business’ goals and objectives. It’s about the business and where they’re headed so we can develop technology that supports those goals and grow the business, take it in a direction and support it. We develop a technology strategic plan to achieve those business goals, all aligned with the mission and budget cycles of the organization.
How do you “unplug”?
It’s not easy, especially when you’re connected as much as we tend to be through our devices. I enjoy the simplicity of the outdoors, to get outside, get away from all the hustle and bustle and get relaxed. I look forward to a little more time with my wife and two sons this summer, fishing, camping, kayaking, biking, going to the beach and just hanging out.