By Georgia Thelen
Matt Zittzmann, a 2004 Lake Orion graduate, visited his hometown on Dec. 19 to speak with technology-minded students about his endeavors.
Zittzmann is CEO and cofounder of Kamcord, a mobile application that allows the user to record what is playing on their smartphone or tablet screen.
Zittzmann described the journey since 2012, of getting Kamcord off the ground with his partners, Kevin and Adi, and his life voyage that preceded their business.
“When I was in middle school, the internet came out. I knew I was going to spend the rest of my life doing tech stuff,” said Zittzmann.
While attending Lake Orion, Zittzmann led his robotics team to 3rd place at nationals, he participated in golf and he would fix old computers and take them to nursing homes to teach the elderly how to use the Internet.
When asked about his robotics experience at Lake Orion, Zittzmann said it was “instrumental for so many reasons.” Zittzmann loved the opportunity to get into the shop and get dirty while at the same time building the team’s robot and incorporating strategy and design.
After graduating from Lake Orion in 2004, Zittzmann attended MIT for four years, earning bachelor’s degrees in computer science and management science. He assured current Lake Orion students that college was not a walk in the park for him, and that he did have to work very hard to succeed and part of that included finding a strong group of peers to study with.
He added that every successful person he knows had to work hard; things did not just come easily to them.
“It’s critical to make friends… Find that group of people you’re going to work with,” said Zittzmann.
After graduating from MIT, Zittzmann joined the Google workforce in Silicon Valley.
He said the rumors surrounding Google are true: he played a lot of pool and created many good memories with his co-workers, but he was also truly inspired.
He told students about the mindset in Silicon Valley and how it is very different from the East Coast or Midwest. People in the Silicon Valley tech industry go home after their 9-5 and work on their start up ideas; they are never truly satisfied with their day jobs. This attitude got Zittzmann thinking.
After about 3 years with Google, Zittzmann felt he was plateauing as a professional and wanted to take a big leap. He thought about how he had wanted to have his own start-up company since the early days of the Web.
He contacted his former MIT classmates, Kevin and Adi, and they together created Kamcord. After being told “no” from investors for almost a year, the three partners finally got that one “yes” that they needed to hit the ground running.
“Just go do it,” said Zittzmann. “Just put yourself in an uncomfortable position… You’re growing when you’re uncomfortable.”
Zittzmann will never settle for just his one business endeavor. He says his ultimate goal is to reinvent the venture platforms; how people go about investing and finding investors.
If Zittzmann could give one piece of advice to current students, he said it would be to “stay humble.”
By Georgia Thelen