Our Inside Axon blog series is updated every Wednesday and features letters from executives within Axon. This week's post was written by Clay Winn, Axon's General Manager of CEW. Check again next week for more experiences and insight from Axon leaders.
As I sit here typing this blog on the second Monday into my 17th year with Axon, the question ‘Why?’ rings in my ear. It’s a question I’m honestly asked a lot. In interviews with candidates, by members of my team, by friends, family, new acquaintances… the list goes on. I guess it’s a natural question to someone that has been doing something for that long. Why?
When I had the opportunity to join Axon (then TASER) my brothers thought I was nuts. Seriously. See, when I joined the company, we weren’t a household name, part of the fabric of law enforcement, or something now seen around the world, including in films and TV shows. We hadn’t gone public on the stock exchange, and very few people knew who or what TASER was at the time. I remember a phone call with my older brother the night before I accepted the position, and I distinctly recall the question, ‘Why? You are jumping into an unknown with this TASER thing.’ My response was simple: ‘I want to be part of something special, a mission – and I know we can make the world a safer place.’ When you find a passion, jump at it. Go all in and don’t look back.
That simple answer still rings true today, 17 years later. I do what I do because I believe in the mission and the people with whom I do it. What I do and how I do it means a lot to me, and I hope what you do matters to each of you as well. The opportunity to be part of something as special as our mission and team may happen once in a lifetime, if ever. I believe this will be something that I will remember for the rest of my life. We have certainly made a mark on the world; and we are continuing that mission today. I remember another employee who answered the same question of ‘Why?’ when he first joined the Axon team. He put it this way: when he is sitting on the porch in his rocking chair and remembering his life, this will be something he can look back on and know that he was part of something amazing.
Axon isn’t just a company of products, but a group of like-minded people wanting to make the world a better place. We have a mission to Protect Life. A mission so powerful that when I’m sitting on that porch in another 17 years or so, I can be that old guy telling stories to his friends about my amazing company.
So my question to you is: ‘What is your why?’