Survey Gizmo at Boulder Startup week
At 3:30 pm in Boulder Colorado, Survey Gizmo founders, Bill Flagg and Scot McDonald, delved into the details of how their company went from making 14 dollars a year, to being worth millions. Their secret: partnership. A classic tale of brains and business, Survey Gizmo wouldn’t be worth millions today if it weren’t for these two different business individuals.
Part of their speech was on how a business partnership wasn’t too different from that of a marriage. Business relationships have to adapt to changes just as much as a marriage. For a business relationship to be successful, both of its co-founding spouses need to be on the same page for changes that need to be made in the company. Otherwise a messy divorce will ensue, and Survey Gizmo does not have a prenup. Their entire business agreement was written by Scott McDaniel after spending a week reading a book on the subject of business relations law (they did only net 14 dollars their first year).
One of the biggest features in their company, was that each partner would in a minimum of 30 per week to retain their partner status. Being a company that started completely on the purchases of customers (called bootstrapping in hip startup lingo), this meant holding two jobs at a time, and probably logging over 60 hours of work per week.
Their most embarrassing moment:
The night before a webinar of over 400 potential customers, Bill and Scott were awake until 4 a.m. getting the slides ready. At such a late hour, mistakes can be made. A word that closely rhymes with duck, but hardly resembles the animal, had managed to become inserted into a slide. This duck didn’t get noticed until the slide show was in full swing, and boy was it noticeable. Luckily the problem was quickly fixed.
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