No product survives first contact with the customer, and we realised the hard way that it's only after you ship that you learn all the things you didn't know you didn't know. So we talk to customers, test our assumptions, and ship while it's uncomfortable.
For some businesses, an office, a server room and a water cooler make perfect sense. But it's not how we want to do things. Since we're lucky enough to be able to work from anywhere, we wanted to take full advantage. After all, there's such a lot of world to see.
We've seen the funded route, and it's a great fit for some businesses. On darker days, we've even longed for an injection of cash from some benevolent Angel or VC. But deep down we cherish the discipline and freedom that comes with relying on your products to turn a profit. It keeps us hungry.
Tonnes of ideas
We come up with plenty of ideas and assess them methodically. Most are quickly trashed, but flexing the idea muscle occasionally throws out golden nuggets.
Talk to customers
All technical people feel a strong urge to build. But we know that upfront customer validation avoids months of wasted effort, and helps us learn what we should build.
The vision may be big, but it's crucial to start with the smallest unit of value. Often this is as simple as a Google Form or a mocked up screenshot.
Ship early, ship often
We found that shipping daily gives you hellish momentum. We've got comfortable with being uncomfortable, since Perfect is the enemy of Done.
A client project in 2013 indicated that most small bakeries battle spreadsheets to manage their wholesale orders. We developed a SaaS web application to keep the dough rolling in.
Since sitting is the new smoking, Standing Desks are all the rage. We found a beautiful wooden design in the US and brought it to the UK market in 2015.
This project was borne out of frustration with the unreasonably high costs for making international calls without VoIP. After a successful year or so, Skype ate our lunch with "Skype To Go", and the project was shuttered.
While working in the world of commercial real estate, we found ourselves scheduling hundreds of photo shoots at short notice. This scratch-your-own-itch project aimed to match photographers to clients on a marketplace, but never gained traction.