Note: This article was first published on 31.01.21
The last weeks have been quite a adventurous ride for me.
On the day I launched my January product I had a power cut in my house.
Yeah, a real one.
Didn’t charge my laptop over night - 30% battery.
But, I’ll get to that in a bit.
Let us start with the question of
Why am I actually doing this stuff?
After having made the decision to start my own, independent journey, the obvious burning urge to find a super-cool, big idea, which will instantly propel me to the fruitful freedom land of After having made the decision to start my own, independent journey, the obvious burning urge to find a super-cool, big idea, which will instantly propel me to the fruitful freedom land of successful founders hang over me.
In late 2019 I started working on all kinds of side projects from a blog, to editing Youtube videos and getting back into learning about coding.
It was then when I discovered a founder who had a rather bold approach towards founding a startup.
“12 startups in 12 months”
Instead of starting one major big thing he would rather start 12.
Reading this I felt a relief as this approach takes out pressure from finding “the one and only” idea.
On the other hand this approach also means a lot of pressure.
As finding, validating and launching one start up per month over 12 months is an ambitious goal.
But, this system had one major benefit in my eyes:
I can try and learn a lot in a very short time.
And that was and is one of my main driving forces.
Learning and growing.
Fun fact: The guy never even finished his project. His 5th startup was so successful that he went full time on it
How do I come up with Ideas?
Equipped with the knowledge that I can start and launch different projects on the go, I headed towards my first small projects.
I started out with personal projects and noticed I need deadlines and accountability.
That is why I enrolled in start up focused schools and communities.
I read and learned about all kind of different techniques and methods to find start up ideas.
I was struck when I came across this quote:
“The way to get startup ideas is not to try to think of startup ideas. It’s to look for problems, preferably problems you have yourself.” Paul Graham from YCombinator
Note: YCombinator is an american Startup Accelerator known for Airbnb, Reddit, Twitch, Dropbox and more.
OK, starting a startup based on my own problems? Where should I start? 😅
After going through many problems and potential ideas I was drawn towards an issue I had with my team at the office. I always had the believe that technology has the potential to help humans - if used wisely ☝️
That is why I decided to tackle our problem at the office with technology.
The problem we faced was:
More remote work meant less to no a social connection in our team.
No chit-chat over the desk
No water cooler talks.
No lunch talks.
So I started out by thinking of ways how to overcome this.
I always talked to my team members about what they would like to do.
I came up with a slack app called “Random Coffee” which easily matched team members each week for a coffee chat.
In addition, I knew one of our team members is a yoga instructor, so I encouraged her to do a remote yoga class once per week with us.
Each week I talked to the team about what they liked and what not and wrote all new things into a list.
But, are we the only ones with this problems?
Let’s look into
After talking to many ex-colleagues, friends and people over the internet I always got the same feedback - same problem, nice list.
Especially people working in People’s Management and HR were having these issues come up.
Now, that I knew this is a problem for a lot of people it’s time to bring the project out into the world with a
I built a dynamic list on a webservice that has a lot of nice functionalities like adding pictures and creating sort able cards.
I then created a website with further information about the topic and kept on talking to people from other companies.
With each interview I got to know more about what is important to which kind of businesses.
That was the basis for the language and benefits I communicated on my website.
Now to the power cut - sorry for the long preface 😁
For the launches of my product I will mainly choose Product Hunt.
This is the main website for tech enthusiasts, startup founders and venture capital firms to discover new tech related things.
I prepared all material, scheduled my launch and went to sleep.
In the morning I made my last checks and literally 15 mins after my launch - zoooooom
All lights out.
I was shocked.
On the launch day I had to be prepared to answer questions, react to problems or topics on social media.
So I created a wifi hotspot, did the last minor things on my laptop before the battery went flat and had to juggle on my smartphone for the next hours.
After about 5 hrs. electricity a small bip bip from the wifi router came up.
Back. On. Track.
I was able to get back to fixing issues on the site and answering topics from the comfort of my laptop.
Right now I am analyzing and talking to potential business opportunities that came up after the launch.
The first ride was stressful, but fun 🥳
I really learned a lot about how to talk to customers and finding things that are of value.
AH, just in case: I think you already know my project, if not you can have a look at (discontinued)
or not 😁
Now is the time to rinse the mind and repeat.
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