When you read about startups and fast growth software businesses, you always read about cool, young, hip groups of people with open-space offices that have exposed HVAC ducts and ping pong tables and bocci ball and on-site yoga instructors and tattoo artists and in-house cafes with organic pasture raised free range free lunches and programmers with red beards and red pet parrots on their shoulders and bean bags and white boards all over the place because the brilliant ideas are flowing so fast and freely that you can barely contain them and a CEO who meditates on his/er stand-up desk and whose blog posts are featured in TechCrunch and Medium and there are no walls or cubes but rather a “highly collaborative” environment where all of these amazing people plan to change the world!
And then there’s Schedulefly.
Five dudes in their 40’s who live in different cities, don’t have meetings (we had one, four years ago, over lunch for a couple of hours – the pic of the event is here), or even conference calls (we’ve literally never had one), and we each just do our own thing every day, knowing that we all have 100% trust in each other to do what needs to be done, and we communicate with each other individually as needed. And what needs to be done is getting the basics right – every single time. The software should be easy to use and always work and solve the common problem of restaurant staff scheduling and communication being a pain. The web site should be fast. People who email us should get a quick, helpful response. People who call should get a live person or a very quick return call and have a real, authentic conversation with somebody who genuinely cares about them and wants to help and who will happily spend as much time as needed with them to do that. Free trials should be set up quickly. Bills paid on time. And we should spend time and money highlighting some of the many, many, many thousands of talented, inspiring people we are so fortunate to serve with our books, podcast, and video series.
That’s really all there is to it. Honestly I think a lot of people would get bored with this business because we truly aren’t trying to change the world and we don’t have or do all of those things that inspire Inc Magazine cover articles. We’re just keeping our heads down, our blinders on, and staying focused on those basics, while having balance in our lives so that we can keep doing this forever without getting burned out. It might be boring, but we couldn’t imagine doing it another way.