Entrepreneur ChatMasse founders Elizabeth Shaffer and Lizzy Brockhoff
1. Lean on your network and don’t be afraid to ask for advice—then take it.
2. Listen to the user. We are constantly running user tests, focus groups, and talking to our top users to figure out how to make the experience better.
3. Partner with someone with whom you have a solid, trusted, relationship.
I think a lot of people think it’s easy to build an app! In reality, it takes a lot of thought, iterations, and testing to build something that feels simple and easy for the user to use. You have to distill a lot of functionality, concepts and content into a very small interface.
ES: I try to be rigorous about prioritization! If I don’t get to everything, that’s OK, as long as I get to the most important things.
LB: Try to be present in the situation at hand—this means both at home and at work.
Getting to hire your own team, and choose whom you work with!
Balancing work and life, especially with kids at home. There are always more projects you can be taking on at the office, or more work to be done. You have to be comfortable with saying “enough” for the day.
We try to make sure that we are present in each of our worlds. When we are at work, we are present in our work, but when we’re at home with our families, we do our best to be present for them too. It’s not always an easy thing to achieve, but that’s what we strive for!
ES: Dark Sky—for weather, especially during this season in NYC! MASSE—for obvious reasons! Evernote—it’s how I manage all of my to-do lists, notes and priorities. Outlook—for email. Slack—it’s how everyone in our office communicates!
LB: WhatsApp/FaceTime—my family is in Australia so there are a lot of long-distance video calls and messages (mainly of my daughter). Google Maps—I just moved to NYC so pretty much can’t function without it. Slack—being a startup we are working lots. Evernote—I keep my to-do list in there. MASSE—it’s addictive :)
"Lean on your network and don’t be afraid to ask for advice—then take it."