Reunion from the Internet Boom - 12 years later

21. September 2012 15:38 by Jay Grossman in   //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

In June 1999, I moved to New York City and took a job as a Site Manager working Agency.com. The job was to manage a team of front end coders responsible for taking a Photoshop design and turning it into a web site. Agency.com had some amazing design folks and really strong client management/strategy, so they had big time clients and did quite well.

It was the stereotypical Internet Boom company from that time period:

  • It was located in a great location - 665 Broadway (right around the Village) with open work spaces.
  • Lots of young people working really long hours. The official work day was 10AM-7PM.
  • Incredible creative talent wowing clients.
  • Excellent social experiences - beer on Fridays, lots of food, late night counterstrike battles, booze cruise, and frequent long nights at the bars. 

The company was doing so well that they public that December.... strike price $26 and IPO was $95. I remember it well, because the IPO day was the same day as the Christmas party with Tito Puente was the entertainment. Got to love the excess of the boom times.

Although I decided to move to join some friends at another company that February, Agency was truly a really amazing place to work. I learned so much, met so many really good people, did some interesting work, and have so many fond memories. Since then I have worked for 3 more companies and I lost touch with every person from those days except for a handful. 

Fast forward to yesterday. I logged on to Facebook and noticed that some former colleagues had set up an event for a reunion. I scrolled through the thread and saw so many names I thought I recognized. I figured I would join the fun.

I walked into a bar near Delancey Street and noticed there were about 100 people there. Everybody filled out name tags with their name and the years they worked for Agency. In classic downtown style, they had trays of pork dumplings and the beer was open bar for the first hour or so.


It was pretty comical seeing so many folks looking at each other's name tags and trying to remember who the other person was after 12 years. 

I got to meet a creative director that worked at Agency.com for some of the time when I was there. It was pretty funny when we realized that we have both been at my current company for the past 5 years together and never knew each other. New York City is a very small and fun world.

Lots of people seem to have moved on to successful roles. Some are executives. Others are running their own companies or at start ups. Others plugging away at corporate jobs. It was good to see so many people following their passions - be it designing handbags, illustrating comics, collecting baseball cards (me), or making fantastic apps. 

It wound up being a very fun night of catching up people, many I have not seen in 12 years. We reminisced about the crazy projects we worked on, the really interesting antics in the office, the many colorful personalities, and how much we really had fun. 

About the author

Jay Grossman

techie / entrepreneur that enjoys:
 1) my kids + awesome wife
 2) building software projects/products
 3) digging for gold in data sets
 4) my various day jobs
 5) rooting for my Boston sports teams:
    New England PatriotsBoston Red SoxBoston CelticsBoston Bruins

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