Andre Durand

Discovering life, one mistake at a time.
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Red Herring Top 100

May 24, 2012 By: Andre Category: Life

I had the pleasure of being nominated and competing on behalf of Ping Identity for a spot in the Red Herring Top 100 awards this week and I’m happy to say — WE WON!

I also had the opportunity to visit with Alex Vieux, CEO of the Red Herring and get this photo accepting the award. Alex is making a difference in the tech and entrepreneurial community with his work here. And I could sense that he was not only deeply passionate about the companies he invited to present but that he was tirelessly dedicated to making a difference in society through his contribution.
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The “Are you Serious?” Filter

September 23, 2008 By: Andre Category: About Me, Entrepreneurism, Identity, Life, Musings, Ping Identity

We all develop filters for the noise and clutter we encounter in every day life. These filters protect us, allow us to concentrate, and generally shield us from being bombarded.

In biology, there is a concept known as homeostasis. Homeostasis is the ability for the body to adjust what it considers ‘normal’ to the current conditions, giving it an ability to detect changes in those conditions.

If it’s hot, your body adjusts its normal state to account for the heat. It can then detect if it gets hotter or colder. The same holds true for light, sound, touch, taste and smell.

In business (and I’ve found this to be especially true with entrepreneurs), I’ve noticed that people have developed a sort of ‘are you serious’ filter when they hear a newbie entrepreneur describe how they are going to set the world on fire. While friends may be generally encouraging, they are also inherently skeptical. And why would you blame them? ‘Normal’ for them is to hear a lot of talk, but witness very little follow-through. We’ve all seen and heard of plenty of great ideas. But of all those great ideas, how many are ever acted upon? And of those that are actually acted upon, how many of those ideas are really, really pursued, through the inevitable hard times in any startup? The answer is, not many.

Life itself I believe has a way of really challenging the conviction of any great yet unimplemented idea.

It reminds me of a question Phil Becker asked me before he invested in Ping. Sitting in his living room, he asked me, “…are you really serious about this?” That was a wise question.

Ping wins Morgan Stanley Award

June 11, 2008 By: Andre Category: Ping Identity

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Not that we don’t appreciate awards, but we haven’t spent much time pursuing them. That said, when a customer like Morgan Stanley, at an internal event, selects you and your product as helping to transform their business, and prior winners include VMware (2005 winner), and you are the only one selected out of some 200 companies that year, well, that’s special. Only 5 companies have ever received this award.

Every year, Morgan Stanley receives 200 applications from companies to present at the Morgan Stanley CTO Summit. We presented back in 2006. A year or so later, Morgan Stanley became a customer, using our technology to secure and integrate their employees use of on-demand applications such as Salesforce.com.

With respect to the award, Morgan Stanley internally votes on which of those 200 companies get to present and then sends out only 36 invites. Of these 36, only four (roughly 12% ever go to contract) and of those, only one receives this award. The award is given to those companies that provide innovation that holds the potential to transform their business into the future. On a more personal note, it’s great to finally see federation receive the recognition it deserves for enabling companies to secure their virtual borders, especially in an era where SaaS is the new delivery platform for enterprise applications. Thank you Morgan Stanley for giving Ping the opportunity to work with you. Thank you Ping Identians for building and supporting such a stellar product.

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After receiving the award, Patrick Harding, Ping’s CTO had a photo opp with Jonathan Saxe, Managing Director, Global Chief Information Officer of Morgan Stanley