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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Jim Goodnight, July 22, 1999. Interview I-0073. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Goodnight's goals for SAS

Goodnight says he tries to avoid managerial tasks, but he does have goals for SAS, including maintaining steady income, growth, and expense growth levels.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Jim Goodnight, July 22, 1999. Interview I-0073. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

JM: How about the way in which leadership tasks generally, managerial tasks impinged on your original programmers' schedule? When did your calendar begin to fill up a lot more with managerial stuff? JG: I don’t think it ever has, really. I try to minimize the number of managerial tasks. I let other people run the company as much as they want to. They can run it all. We'll have a monthly budget meeting and we'll take a look at where we stand financially as [to] what are our expenses, what's our income, are things looking good? Do we need to slow down hiring a little bit or let it go? This year, for example, I've tried to put a damper on hiring. We've had a twelve percent a year for the last three years -- compounded twelve percent a year of new staff. I was a little concerned, last year our expenses crept up a little bit more percentage wise than our income did. So this year, my goal is very simple. I want revenues to grow faster this year than expenses, so we can get back into kilter because they used to be pretty much the same. I have always tried to keep income, growth and expense growth, at about the same level. This year revenue growth is going to be more than expense growth. That's one of my measurements that I use to determine how we're doing. SAS is fortunate in the fact that we've got this annual renewal stream of income that we can count on ninety-nine percent of coming. There's no doubt how much revenue we're going to get from renewals. That represents about eighty percent of our income that is pretty much guaranteed as long as we continue to meet the expectations for the customer. The only real variable is how many new customers we can bring in, and how much new software we can sell to existing customers. That typically is right around twenty percent.