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.

No Electricity

No Wifi.

Nice.

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

Mind.

Blown.

๐Ÿคฏ

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.

๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ’จ

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? ๐Ÿ˜…

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 โ˜๏ธ

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

Problem Validation

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

Launch

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 ๐Ÿ˜

For the launches of my product I will mainly choose Product Hunt.

Why?

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

๐Ÿ˜

All lights out.

Nothing working.

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.

๐Ÿคฉ

Back. On. Track.

Nice.

I was able to get back to fixing issues on the site and answering topics from the comfort of my laptop.

What’s next?

Right now I am analyzing and talking to potential business opportunities that came up after the launch.

The first ride was stressful, but fun ๐Ÿฅณ

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

virtualteamactivitieslist.com

or not ๐Ÿ˜

Now is the time to rinse the mind and repeat.

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