I thought I would document my first week as a tech startup for a number of reasons one being, that with no co-founder I don’t have anyone to sit down with at the end of the week to have a beer and discuss the week that was in the trenches. Two I want to share my experiences for any would be disruptive startup.
Last week I launched my recruitment platform which aims to better align the expectations of businesses with high quality recruiters. Previously I had shied away from calling myself a ‘Start Up’ I never wanted to be seen as a tech nerd fresh from graduating a computer science/engineering PHD wearing t-shirts & hoodies to work, after all this was my second business, I was seasoned campaigner and I wanted to be treated as such.
Over the last the last 18 months I had planned every aspect of my business from development, to launch, to scale and further improvement again. The one thing I never really looked into was how people would receive my little business except for ‘Ive done some reasearch and people like it they think its a smart way to look at things’ and of course there was always going to be the people who didn’t like for a variety of reasons both of which was completely fine.
Now being a disruptive model I realise that it could’ve been advised to estimate more closely how my target audience was going to receive my new business. I think it would be safe to say that anyone who has heard about my model sits in three very distinct categories.
1) This is a good idea, exactly what the industry needs and I’m prepared to give a go in the early stages. This response was received by a great number of businesses and recruiters a like.
2) I’m interested but not ready to buy, I’ve seen someone launch something similar before and it fell over, or I was expecting this to happen at some stage and I’ll sit and watch where it goes.
3) You are the worst person in the world how dare you do this to me and the recruitment industry. ‘You only promote distrust between employers & recruiters.
I received responses from all categories that, in my wildest dreams I was not expecting. Firstly I received two calls from ASX top 50 HR directors who congratulated me on the model and thought it would be good for the industry. One of my assumptions in my business plan was that large multinationals wouldn’t be interested in our model because they were able to achieve similar results by having massive market power.
I received a lot of responses of industry thought leaders who sat in the middle interested in what I was doing and wanted to be kept in the loop but not ready to buy yet. This group I have also included the large multinational recruitment firms where I have noticed that their directors and recruiters alike have been stalking me on my LinkedIn profile (of which I’m currently receiving about 180 views per day) and I was reliably informed that I have been placed on their next board meeting agendas to discuss what if any interaction they would like to have with us.
The third group is whilst not expected was totally underestimated. I launched a product which has the underlying mission to make recruitments services fair to everyone both the employers and the recruiters and then to make the recruiters more accountable for their services. I understood that this might ruffle a few feathers but what I didn’t expect was the veracity that is sometimes attached to some in this group. Within the first 24hrs of launch I had received two threatening phone calls and more than half a dozen nasty emails basically of accusing me of putting people’s livelihoods at risk and pushing them out of their homes and onto the streets.
Not only was I the centre of attack but a client who had participated in our offline beta testing phase had received a phone call from someone using a fake name and threatened to report him to the Chartered Accountants Association for unethical conduct because he provided a testimony on our website from it’s public launch which he deemed to be false
Now I’m not going to lie to you I somewhat enjoyed the abuse, I figured there is no point calling yourself a disrupter if no one is upset by your existence and, in a in odd way it only reinforced to me that we are on the right track and that we have the opportunity to build a business that can really make a difference!!
I can’t wait to see what week 2 brings!!!
Feel free to connect with me on twitter @cammckay99 or LinkedIn