Who are the ‘Syzygy 3’?

The notion of too many chefs might seem to apply to a small firm that has three – count ‘em, 3! – founders. But Cameron, Sean, and William have made it work since the company’s launch in 2004. Each is unique in their personality and skill sets, but it’s their common goal to create a successful company that has seen them through and continues to drive them to greater heights.

 

William Chan
Founder & Principal (fills COO role)

William claims his desire to build the Iron Man suit was just a childhood dream, but we think he’s still tinkering with it in his cubicle some days. William’s the Gadget Guy – always on the look out for the latest and greatest, with an innate ability to figure out how things work (he knew how to set the VCR clock before it was automated). This makes William ideal to run the show from an operational standpoint: he assigns the resources, he oversees the projects, and he ensures they come in on time and on budget.

Personal Fact: William has studied electrical engineering, computer science, and business. To this day, his favorite job was video store clerk, where he memorized the inventory and watched virtually every VHS tape (it was a long time ago).

Cameron Niles
Founder & Principal (fills CTO role)

Cameron is most definitely the Tech Guy, but a tech guy who actually uses the English language to explain technology (mom is an English teacher; dad a musician). His vast expertise puts the company in an enviable position of being able to handle virtually any environment and a multitude of technologies. Cameron plans the majority of solutions (network, server, voice) for clients, and has developed the overall platforms for the company as a whole. He’s also become a sought-after resource for articles on technology.

Personal Fact: Cameron is a collector of sorts – mostly wines, real estate, and random knowledge (don’t play Jeopardy! with him). He was the first to equate the company’s founding with a syzygy (see below).

Sean C. O'Rourke
Founder & Principal (fills CEO role)

Sean is That Guy. If it doesn’t fall under operations or technology, then that guy handles it. The role actually fits Sean perfectly – keeps him from getting bored with any one aspect of the business. His list of duties include the internal (payroll, rent, payables), the external (sales, networking, receivables), and client work (management & support); Sean is also the “acclaimed” author of the Syzygy 3 blog, Twitter feed, newsletter, and portions of this site.

Personal Fact: Sean is the resident sports guy. As readers of the blog know he lives and dies by his teams (Phillies, Flyers, 76’ers, 49’ers, Notre Dame football). He’s also constantly leaving early to make his basketball, football, or softball games (among other competitions).

Now for a little history – this is a true retelling how the company got its name – Syzygy 3.

Cameron, William, and Sean were eating at a diner in the Bronx. The business was a week away from going live and they still hadn’t decided on a name. The initial thought was to create a name based on their initials (W.C.C.N.S.O.R); but the only "real" word to come out of those letters was CROWN, and they thought that was already way overused. (Besides, none of them look like Pierce Brosnan or Steve McQueen.)

So, they're shooting the breeze when they start talking about how things were falling into place. Their previous firm was shutting down its SMB division, which was leading to their layoffs, and some clients who knew about the pending changes expressed interest in following them (they solicited none of them).

"It's like a syzygy," Cameron said.

William and Sean thought he said synergy. Cameron shook his head. "No, syzygy. It's the perfect geometric alignment of three of more celestial bodies. It typically refers to the alignment of the sun, the moon, and the earth."

BANG!

William and Sean looked at each other. "That's it," they said in unison (Sean knocked on the table).

Thus was born Syzygy 3, Inc. And lo all these years later they're still going strong (though they've aged considerably).