How to build a remote company from idea to exit with Art Lapinsch

How to build a remote company from idea to exit with Art Lapinsch

Dec 13, 2021 08:45 AM
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Dominic Zijlstra
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Art Lapinsch worked for a venture builder in Silicon Valley, before quitting and building his own company, fully remote and without VC money. He is now sharing his learnings and working on an online course
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Art Lapinsch worked for a venture builder in Silicon Valley, before quitting and building his own company, fully remote and without VC money. He is now sharing his learnings and working on an online course
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Hello, and welcome to another episode of the podcast. Today, I'm joined by Art Lapinsch. Art has a lot of experience building companies in Silicon valley, and then he started his own company, which has successfully built and exited. And he's now into online courses. Art is going to teach us a lot about how he learned from his failures and what other methods you can learn if you want to create a successful business.
Hello, and welcome to another episode of the podcast today. I'm joined by Art Lapinsch. I know art from the ODCC court based course. Art Lapinsch has grown as a company builder. He then built his own remote company and exited it and is now working on his own course on how you can make remote work, work well for your company.
So welcome art. Thanks Dom for having me. Yeah. So I'm very curious to hear about like your background, your whole learning journey. So maybe let's just start at the beginning. I think the first thing you did was work at a company builder. Now I didn't know what it was initially. Okay. Tell me a bit more about that.
Yeah, sure. So roughly 10, 11 years ago, I was still a little living in Vienna and then stumbled into the startup ecosystem. Started with organizing startup events, particularly weekends. Weekend events where people would come together, work on ideas and pitch it in front of investors.
And then the next obvious step for us was to create a startup conference and it was relatively big back. Back in the day, like, so 2011, we had 800 participants from all over Europe coming to Vienna for an entire week. And it was like a mixture between the startup competition, but also expert panels you know, sharing their lessons learned.
And like, during those two years, I really fell in love with the startup ecosystem, mainly because I saw that a little shit like me was able to talk with people who have really achieved great things on eye level. And I really just liked the people who were working in the startup ecosystem. So that's why I stuck with it.
And then moving away from Vienna, which is my hometown. I moved to Berlin that was around 2012 and I joined a company called hit Fox group. So they're currently ionic group and they are accompanied builders. So what's a company builder. It is similar to a venture funds, so they have their own, a small pool of money.
And what they do is they look at different markets. So in our case, it was advertising techniques. And they form hypotheses and kind of like business plans. So they say, oh, we see that there's a certain trends going on in mobile advertising that there's more mobile games coming up. And one of the bottlenecks for mobile games is distribution.
So then what they would do is they would create a business plan for that kind of like starting a mobile ad network. They would collect. A group of founders and then fund them with initial set of money and then push them off. And my role within this structure was something called venture developer.
So venture developers were, I'd say business generalists, usually who has the task to take these business plans. And within the time span of usually three months come up with the you know, first first step on the ladder of building a company, is it kinda like the back office would take care of incorporation, but the venture developers would be responsible for hiring the co-founders for hiring the first employees for getting the sales and marketing kickstarted.
Sometimes even the first iteration of the product. And, yeah, that's what I've done then for this company builder for two and a half years. Right. Yeah. So one interesting thing you mentioned about the whole startup ecosystem is how easy it is to get access to people who have achieved great things. You have some examples of how that has helped you maybe learn some things faster or achieve certain goals that you thought would be unattainable for a little shit like you.
Yeah, examples. I mean, the examples are everywhere, right? I, I just compare it to friends who are working, let's say in traditional corporate careers where you have to really put in the years until you're taking seriously. And back then, kinda like in the startup ecosystem we had a couple of people in Vienna who are currently running a venture fund called speed invest.
And they were one of the first kind of founding teams back in the mid two thousands who exited telco and tech company. And so those people we're just like sitting down at the table and sharing their stories and talking to people who are 19 20, 21 years old, which is amazing because I just couldn't see the same thing happening with corporate leaders.
Maybe I'm mistaken. But yeah, that was my impression back in the day. And in terms of learning yeah, I mean, I think you learn primarily by making your own. So even if someone tells you focus on the customer and focus on the problem first and then build the product based on the customer problem, you're probably listening there is taking your notes, but the first few times you will still focus on the product and yeah.
Probably lose sight of the customer problem. Yeah. I definitely can relate. So so yeah, then at some point you started with some co-founders I believe, building your own company. So how did that go and what initial mistakes that you make and what did you learn from that? Yeah, so that's fast forwarding to 2015.
At that time I was living in San Francisco, also working for the company builder and the area of focus shifted from Aztec to FinTech. I had adventure development for and at some point yeah, I was just asking myself the question, you know, do I want to try and yeah give it a go on my own outside of a company builder structure.
And the reason why I was thinking that it was because within the company builder, you have certain advantages. So kind of, there's a safety net to get a fixed salary. There's like a back office that takes care of things such as accounting incorporating. Taxation, yada yada, yada. But they also take a majority stake of the venture.
And so that's kind of the upset is primarily for the venture biller, but you get the stability. And one thing I just wanted to experience was the no support system and trying it on your own. And I talked to a couple of friends, told them effectively tha. If there's anyone in their circle of friends who was starting a business and who need support, I'm happy to do it after my working hours and yeah, help them out.
And so one of my friends whom I, funnily enough, interviewed for one of the positions for our company builder he was saying, oh, actually I am working on a business idea. So he invited me over, we had a white boarding session and there was a couple of different trends or like different problem areas that we had to look at.
So one of them was, I think what's currently known as class pass, so it's kind of bundling supply of gyms and fitness, fitness providers, and then selling it's to the demand side as a subscription model that was going through the roof in the U S and we were considering maybe taking that to Europe.
And then the other problem set that we looked at was recruitments are kind of, it came from the hunch that if you would walk down the street in San Francisco, you would see every single restaurant, just having small windows signs, where it would say now hiring and, or just like thinking. Okay. So how, how are companies currently hiring what's the main channel?
It was Craigslist and it still is Craigslist for a lot of businesses. And if you look at presence, the website hasn't been updated since like late nineties, I guess, or like early two thousands whenever they were started and everyone hates the interface, but everyone's using it and they were back then I think grossing $200 million a year in recruitment marketing ad spend.
And we said, okay, we want to have a chunk of that. So we'll go after initially the first business idea was we wanted to create a Tinder like app where you would have a card-based system and kind of as the employer, you would upload your job ad or your job opening with kind of a couple of structured data points.
Like which street is it at? What's the title of the job. What's the hourly rate and so on and so forth. And then for the job seeker side, you would just open the app and it would take your geolocation and send you job openings that are close by to you. So you would just like swipe through left. I don't like the job.
Right. I liked the job immediately apply. That was the idea. And we worked on this idea for a year and a half and. Selling software or selling new solutions to small and medium-sized businesses is a pain. They just don't want to deal with additional complexity. They usually don't have the budgets to really spend.
And if max they hire, let's say 10 to 25 employees a year. So even if you get someone signed up, the revenue potential is very, very limited. And of course, if you would have properly talked to customers, And I guess that was my responsibility, right at the beginning. I didn't know how to ask the right questions.
I should've read the mom test, but Rob Fitzpatrick probably a little bit earlier we could have avoided this mistake, but so we spent a year and a half and we had like a small friends and family angel investing rounds early on. And we spend literally the entire money on to designers and developers who are developing this product and we toss it away after a year and a half.
So that was a huge mistake because we rent and just like in the wrong direction. And we got very, very lucky that one of our features for this product was the idea that if you have an app that you need to grow the app somehow. Right? And there's like one way of doing like paid app advertising and that's very, very expensive.
So back in the day you would just like buy a mobile download mobile app, download ad on Facebook. I think. And the costs, there were somewhere around like three to $5 per download, which is pretty expensive. And instead, what we wanted to do is we want it to go the indeed routes. And for every job opening, that's being uploaded to our platform, just create a website which is an index, and then you can increase SEO density and then ideally get organic traffic of people, look for jobs in the area, then funnel them to the app and get them signed up there.
So it turns out we never published this feature within the context of the app, but we got lucky. And one of our first big coverage is a ride sharing company in the U S they said, oh, this sounds like a feature that we need, because we need to hire thousands of drivers all across the country, every single month, and a feature like this, which is pretty much automated distribution of our job as is something that we currently don't have.
And we lucked out that we forget about the sun costs. We'll toss away the app, and we'll just focus on those distribution back in service. And then within a couple of weeks, we had a pretty significant amount of media revenue running through this platform. And we said, that's it. So when you see it, you know it, and we definitely knew that that was kind of like end of 2016.
And then from then on, we were on path to becoming a real company. So I guess the big mistake we made early on was just executing in a completely wrong direction. Not really validating if there was a great demand. And also, I guess, being a little bit blinded by the, the excitement of building a specific type of products, but then not really looking at the fundamental stuff, kind of what it would mean for a business.
And the learning was yeah. If you see an opportunity to jump on it, so that's it, right? Yeah. So, yeah, I guess you, you recognized your mistakes, then you needed some, some luck, of course. But at that point, I guess you were able to scale the company. So how did that next phase, once you got a little real company, how did that differ from the initial experimentation phase?
And what's your learning process? Different or as the same, you still make mistakes. I've learned my dad or was it more structured? Always make mistakes. It continues to this day. So yeah, I dunno. Just like entrepreneurship in general feels to me like solving new problems every single day. And of course you will make mistakes and you're constantly in an area where you don't know the answers.
So you have to somehow Try to be less wrong at every single step. And that's in every single aspect of the business model the product developments, the internal organization, how you interact with your employees. And so I'd say like one of the really significant differences from the early stage, which was 2015, 2016, when it was a startup and startup, I would define as an organization, that's still looking.
For a scalable and successful business model. Right? And then once you have that, right, you switch over to becoming more of a company, which is more predictable and can be run with a replicatable business model. So in the startup phase, since we didn't earn revenue, we also couldn't pay salaries. So all of the founders were kind of living off of their own savings for two.
And anyone else can like contractors, we paid. So those were the couple of of product designers and product developers. And then everyone else would be compensated in equity promises. Right. And there is only so long someone can go without saying, oh, okay. I trust you. But then at some point it's probably, I think.
These shares are probably worth nothing and especially more difficult. If you have a family, if your significant other is pushing and asking you like, what the hell are you doing? Like, why are you spending so much time on something that doesn't really have a good return? And so in the early days we had incredible turnover.
I think at some point accounted and in the first two years, think it must have been 20 to 30 people who have gone in and out of the organization. And that's not good for organizational culture and just in general, right? Like it's a lot of time waste on everyone's behalf. Then I would say that was the biggest difference that changed.
So once we were able to pay salaries we were pretty, pretty focused on. Hiring the correct people and big shadows to my co-founders. Eric, Spencer and Mike who did the bulk of the hiring because we hired primarily on engineering France, and I'm not an engineer, so I couldn't really evaluate people on their, on their skills.
But once we hired people, we had barely. Any false positives. So very few people that entered the door, which we had to let go, I think like one or two. And secondly, out of all the people who joins, we had zero people leaving up until the acquisition happened. And that's one of the things that I'm most proud of.
It's like, revenue's nice becoming profitable as nice, but the fact that people wanted to work for this company was that. That was really exciting. And I guess one of the reasons why probably is because we were set up as a remote first company and that's already, since the beginning of 2015, kind of like the original reason why we decided to go remote first is because we just couldn't afford the developer salaries in San Francisco.
And we had to look outside. And so a couple of former coworkers of Two of my co-founders were living in Germany. And so we started hiring in Germany and then one person in Singapore and so on and so on. So kind of, we had a distributed workforce from day one, and I guess from an employee perspective, like why does this interesting is because back in the day, you wouldn't have that many options to work for a company where you could stay at home where you wouldn't have to commute and could stay with family. So I think the average age of our employee base was I think, mid thirties and most of the people had some sort of a family ties where it was like parents that they needed to care for or kids they were going to school. And yeah, I guess people really appreciated the flexibility and then since it was a pretty interesting group of people in terms of combination of like where they were coming from and sign. What we try to do is on a quarterly basis just to do team off-sites where we would fly everyone into one city. We would book an Airbnb and then we work on one core initiative. But primarily the, the focus was just to get to know the people and Def I think the cohesion of the team was pretty big. So by the time we got acquired, I think it was 15 employees. Yeah. That's an interesting company size because you know, every single person it's so few people that you can even go deep with every single person and yeah, it worked in this context.
Yeah. That's awesome. And I guess that's the basis of you have to work you're doing now. But what interesting thing to do as before I think was that you're always in an unknown area and you have to try to figure that out since. So have you found any hacks or shortcuts? Like, I don't know, having mentors or maybe following the relevant people to get discolored what to do in an opposition and our area of faster.
Yeah. So I guess there's two ways you can spin the unknown classification. So one is unknown to you but known to some other people. And that's the benefit of Google and Twitter is that within a couple of searches, you can open up doors into rabbit holes that you can follow and where you can you know, just try to understand a little bit more about this industry, this problem from the perspective of different people.
So threads and at the rise where I'm really a thing back in the day. But what helped me the most was just going on to Google and looking at blog posts from people who have started the business. So for example, when we try to figure out how to create a global compensation plan, that was compliance with regulations in the U S but also in other places.
One thing that really helped was all the writing that did. And so it's a company that does a social media management tool and they they have been very transparent about how they run their organization for many, many years. So this was super, super helpful, I guess, on the utter bucket, which is unknown to everyone.
So let's say. One example is creator business models. Right? So what do you do if you're a solo founder? And if you want to monetize your knowledge? Yes. There's maybe some examples some examples that are doing it well, but it is still a Greenfield opportunity. It's like more about figuring it out.
And for those cases in general probably helps to have guiding principles or just figuring out like what your convictions are kinda like how you want to constrain yourself. I'll give you an examples for business models. You can, I can do consulting. I can do online courses. I can create SASS, I can do many things.
And one of the constraints that I put on myself as I wants to limit the time inputs that I have to do in order to generate value. So it kind of consulting is lower ranked for me, then a scalable online courses and building microsites. And so I guess for those cases, you just have to figure out like, what are the options within the pool and then pick proper constraints and then just experiments.
Right? So it's like even if you hear something smart from someone else wants to, can tell you have burned your own fingers. Yeah. That's interesting. You mentioned about guiding principles and I know you talked before as well about having a personal advisory board. So how do you go about picking your principles or picking the people on your board and how do you decide where to maybe discard somebody I'll replace it with something new that you found.
Personal advisory board. So I have an imaginary advisory board. It's a notion page where there are a couple of names of people. So one of them was Richard Fineman. It was a great physicist. And I am just trying to write down kind of the main principles that I think I learned through them. So I've read a bunch of books of his read, a couple of his lectures and kind of my main takeaway from him is teaching by analogy, teaching by metaphor.
So simplifying things. And I didn't know the person personally, he's dead, unfortunately, and I didn't have access to him, but sometimes just having a piece of paper or something where you can just cross-reference and then it's almost like a checklist going through is like, am I trying to. Have I tried simplifying this or have I tried explaining this with a metaphor?
So that would be kind of the advice that I think he would give me. And so a couple of names on there. In terms of real mentors, I don't have a mentor relationship right now. Like when I was working at a company builder, usually my bosses And my co-founders acted sort of as mentors in areas that I didn't know as much about.
And it's, it's, I think it's in general, a good practice of getting out of your head and then verbalizing things or getting just a second or third opinion. The one thing that's important is just make a distinction for yourself as to why is the person saying. What they are saying. So like what's their context?
Do they have like, what's their previous experience? So let's say someone who gives me advice about fundraising and who has previously built only hyper-growth companies and has raised hundreds of millions of dollars. We'll probably have a very, very different take on fundraising than an indie.
Hacker was always bootstrapped and and then the work. And so kind of whatever I'm saying right now comes from the context of someone who has been an employee in a venture, a venture builder, and has started a company that was bootstrapped primarily and remote first. And that's my set of experiences.
So kind of if I were to give advice to someone who's trying to create the fastest growing company venture capital, probably not the right person to talk to. And so I've got that. That's the way I would just evaluate the, the feedback that I get. Good teacher of mine from grad school said every, every opinion is valuable enough to be heard.
At least for the benefit of you to understanding where they're coming from and exactly that way, I would just go about mentoring and mentorship. Yeah. That makes sense. It's almost like the challenge is finding somebody who was on the same path, but that ahead of you, right? Yeah. And so kind of I've a couple of close friends from Austria still that are also founders they're working in different industries.
And one of the things that one of them was talking about that he really likes peer groups in. And so he's been a CEO and founder of saaS startup. Now he's a C-level executive also at assassin data company. And he said the main benefit of being within these peer groups is that one it's always context specific.
So all of the people in that group usually are working in the same industry and also in similar positions and similarly sized organization sort of problems tend to be very similar and there is a one common thing or like one very obvious thing that you would do when you have a problem. So you ask your family, your significant others or your friends and stay care for you.
And I think that can also be a problem because you have this additional personal context of where they maybe don't want to hurt you, or they talk to you in a specific way, like whatever the relationship was previously so kind of having a more objective and more context, specific feedback is okay. Yeah.
Yeah, definitely. I guess one of the challenges is actually finding pillars for that. I guess there's more and more complete communities that offer that for sure. Yeah. I think the benefit of Twitter is that you can find people online that have a similar affinity to you. Right? Who, who consumed the same type of media, maybe like were.
And a similar stage of their development and chances are that if you're looking for advice and you're in certain position, there's at least someone else on the internet who's doing the same. And I think Twitter definitely a bubble, right? So, sorry, very specific group of people that's on Twitter, but if you are working in tech, there's a high volume of very interesting people on there that are willing to do.
So, I'm not sure if it is as relevant for many other industries. I'm just not sure because I am not in those industries and I don't know, but for a tech, I think it's a pretty powerful tool. Twitter is kind of what I would like LinkedIn to be. And it's mainly kind of, you get clouds by saying smartphone things or riding the rides and yes, a lot of it is formulated.
And there's also sometimes very little originality and the thinking, but you can still find people who are doing crazy shit and just connect with them. Yeah, definitely. So it always there it's, it is cool, even though I said, yeah, it can be tough, but it definitely has a lot of, a lot of benefits.
So. I actually talked with Hassan Kubbah on a podcast a few days ago and he wrote about the unfair advantage. It always seems to me like the unfair advantage had ended up for us remote work. And you made that the basis for your next project. Is that kind of how it went or how, or what was your thinking there?
Yeah, it just happened organically. So unfair advantage as a is a, I haven't read the book, but my assumption is kind of like find asymmetries where you have more leverage than others. Right. Yeah. So yeah, I guess remotes is something that I've been exposed to before. COVID, and it's a couple of years earlier than that.
And so when I remember telling people in 2015 that it was working from home, people thought I was unemployed. And now my favorite thing is just like in January, 2020, you would hear things like. At large companies saying gay, remote doesn't work at the scale of our business. And then in April 20, 28, LinkedIn would be flooded with thought leadership articles of kind of 12 things we did to master the pandemic or how to turn the yeah, this challenge into an opportunity.
So how did it happen? Right. And just for context. I started a company in June called remote and the initial idea was just to create one online course about remote work. And earlier this year, actually I wanted to take a sabbatical. I left the job that I had in December of last year.
My plan was to do nothing for a year then after a month. I just got sucked into online education. Like first through the perspective of a student, I was doing course era courses, and then I took this Gumroad road course. But. Indian guy called pre-time nut and he has a fantastic Gumroad course called programmatic SEO.
It's just a two hour recording of him being in Chrome, installing a couple of plug-ins. One of them is called keyword everywhere. And just showing how he goes about identifying keyword opportunities that you can use to create content straps. Or even for ad buying. So super, super valuable course. I paid, I think like 29 bucks back in the day it took him, probably took him two hours to just like sit down to the computer and just talk through the stuff that he's doing anyway.
And it was like a win-win situation. So he captured value by providing this knowledge and I gladly paid it and got tremendous value out of it. So I thought at the end of this quarter, Very interesting, because number one is the business model is pretty clear. So you sell knowledge of a product. You sell knowledge as a product.
So kind of, you don't have to put in any manual effort in replicating this. So you can either record a video or you can write an ebook or you can read an online email course. And secondly, the business model makes a lot of sense. So kind of, if you don't have to put in manual. You sell, let's say a hundred licenses at a $29.
That should be $2,900. Right. And it's for doing nothing. So it captured my attention and I said, Hmm, maybe this year I'll just experiment in this area. Online education has any way kind of an area that Excited about for many, many years, but I haven't found a kinda like a proper business model to doing it.
And this seems like the first time where I can see myself doing it. And so then I started creating an online course about brand strategy. So it was like one of the things that I'm really passionate about, but I've talked to many people in the past launched it. Then, let me make a lot of sales, but it was, it was a good learning experience to just succeed what it takes to structure a curriculum, like how to record video.
I remember the first recording I was sitting in front of the webcam an a for hours and not really getting a proper take in. And I thought this is never going to work. And since it was interested in the area, I said, okay, there's this online course called it's on the course creators. That's like, where.
And that was my first exposure. And so within on-deck my, my goal was first to connect with a couple of people like you for on a similar path, kind of. So it can share learnings, teach each other, secondly, to learn a little bit more about the craft of making courses. And the third thing was I wanted to figure out what the.
Products could be and one of the cool things about on-deck was that we had the opportunity to present in front of others. Right? Like these I don't remember what it was called, but the student sessions. And I don't remember the year, but yeah. Yeah, but it's yeah, the 30 minutes where you just send a title that people can sign up for the session.
And then usually, I don't know, 10 to 20 people show up and you have a quick presentation done, a Q and a, and I remember also part of the, on the cohort, he said, you know what, instead of doing a 30 minute presentation, Twenty-five minutes presentation, five minutes, Q and a, just do 10 minute presentation and 20 minutes of Q and a.
One of the best pieces of advice I ever received. So then I just made a high-level presentation of some of the areas of learning for remote work and yeah. Presented it and one of the areas that people were most excited about or most curious about was how communication works in the remote first company has.
So how does knowledge sharing knowledge storage? How does like what different channels can you use? The topic of internal communication. And then I said, I will do a couple of office hours about this broader topic and just do every two weeks, a new subsets events where people can sign up and ask questions.
And so that I did that. I dunno five events, so like three months. And the one thing that stood out was documentation. So people were most interested about documentation. That's where it had the best content. And yeah. Then I started putting together a curriculum. And so I initially thought I would be done writing this email based course in a month.
It turns out it took more than half a year. And yeah, now I finished writing it. Two weeks ago. So is it an unfair advantage that I have? Maybe but yeah, the current product is definitely the result of almost an entire year of additional iterations. So I couldn't have written the, or I couldn't have produced the, the, the, the online course that I'm currently offering earlier this year.
Impossible. Right? Yeah, that's it. I see. Interesting. Much more work than like most of the work is invisible. Right. Like we used to be only see something and yeah, that's easy money, but a lot of work has to be put into it. Yeah. And in general kind of are there things I would do differently now? Yes, I guess.
So I would always try to validate interest in the product as early as possible. And yeah. A bunch of people have written about it. There's the lean startup, the book everyone keeps saying, yeah, I try to charge before you even built. But yeah, I've heard this advice for the past 10 years and it's going to, if you're in the middle of building out of.
You tend to forget. So I don't even know if this is advice that I would give people, we'll just figure it out on their own. Yeah. I got to leave made that mistake a lot of times. I probably did it better advice for a first time last week when I gauged interest for certain content piece on Reddit and then when it got traction, so now I'm actually building that content.
So that's like the first time I'm doing it. What type of content was it? So that's actually a template for learning a language. So yeah, first it's gotta be a general template and I'm thinking I have, this will probably be like language specific as well. Like for example, Chinese Portuguese or languages that I've learned.
Yeah, that's basically it, rather than a course that just hits you a language. It's more like a bit more meta and it actually teaches you, how do I go about learning a language? Reminds me a little bit of that block post, or I think that chapter from Tim Ferriss and the four hour chef where it talks about picking up languages and how it's how he goes about first going through the list of you know, the top ones.
Words or like most used words in the language, then taking the auxiliary verb approach where you just use the auxiliary verb and then don't have to learn conjugation of verbs and so on. So it definitely is super interesting, super interesting area. Yeah, actually. So one of the interesting responses I got from that Reddit.
Tim Ferriss language advises piece of shit. And that should definitely be not being a template. So that will be, that'd be very interesting to see how that turns out. Super interesting. Yeah. But yeah, I mean, it's like, you're doing it right. So with the, I guess like with the online courses, the thing is I guess I could have figured out the remote stuff earlier on, but in, in February when I started.
On this online course creation journey. I want us to ship an end result within a month. And I didn't think I had the right content and the right knowledge to put something good out about remote work for. People might say, you know, even if you think it's not going to be good enough, just do it and then you'll learn in the process and then you iterate.
But with brand strategy, I just had already kind of like a rough outline of knew kind of what needed to be done. And that's why I shifted first. And I guess the one thing that I would do differently probably is even start distributing this idea or my, my idea of doing this project a little bit earlier on, on Reddit.
Yeah, I dunno. Like one thing that was really, really helpful in the process was building in public and I'm not a Twitter expert. So like earlier this year I reacted not reactivated my account. I kind of started using it again after five years of not doing anything with it. And there was.
Kind of a couple of people who had this hashtag building public and they were just sharing everything they were doing about the projects, kind of all the failures, like how much revenue they were making kind of questions they were asking. And so I documented the building of the brand strategy course and the Twitter thread.
So every single time I would have. Like a new thing that I would ship something new. I would just yeah, put a tweet out, maybe a photo and then just kind of a small note of what's what was going on. And the interesting thing here is it's yeah, it is educational for people who read the thread. But to me it was super useful.
Whenever I was sharing something and people are commenting on it. There's a different way. You can do it or maybe you're missing something. And that was super helpful because it's very specific feedback to problem that you have right now. And just like, by putting it out in the open, you then just create an additional opportunity for learning.
So that was pretty helpful. Yeah. Building and public can definitely be powerful. And I tried to do it more consistently as well. It's hard, I think, to keep it up consistently, but when you do it definitely has a lot of. Yeah. The easiest thing for me is just creating a first first tweets, regardless of what it is.
It can be like a screenshot, just like some sort of high level explanation of what. And then just continue writing at below because the perfect thread or so, I mean, who cares probably doesn't even exist, but you can at least always just add to the chain of things that you've done. And she's like almost kind of the next page in your notebook and kind of if you use it that way I don't know.
It felt kind of okay. Yeah. Maybe I know you use a notion a lot, so maybe since I'm working on a tool as well for like learning knowledge. And yeah, you talked about using Twitter as a tool. So how do you view tools in the area of knowledge management and to learn new things and like, what have you found to work well, but like to see what maybe doesn't even agree.
It's the holy grail tooling questions, I guess someday somebody who I interviewed. They'll tell me the answer and then, yeah, I dunno. So I'm always cautious about this because at least from my experience and kind of like the context where I'm coming from, I probably try many dozens of different tools over the past 15 years.
And. Stuck with me. Nothing. No, no habits, no tool, no nothing. So it's just constantly evolving. Maybe that's just yeah, I dunno like a problem of my brain, but. Yeah, I can just tell you like what I used maybe two years ago and what I'm using now. So two years ago I was on Evernote and Evernote. If you used for the past 15 years, the way I just use it as kind of as a browser accessible notebook.
And every single day I wake up, I just creates a new entry in my daily logs. And I just write the dates on it. What day of the week it is, what year it is. And then at the end of the ride, So instead of writing a, to do list of what I have to do it, I just use it as a log of things that I complete. So at the beginning of the day, it's completely empty.
And when I finished something, I just added to the list. And that way, if I look back, I know what I've done on that particular day. So that's helpful was a super helpful for work because that way I could, at the end of the week, if I do kind of like a weekly summary, I don't have to look into emails or anything.
I can just look at the. And then come up with a quick update. So notion I started using earlier this year and first time around was when I used it. I dismissed it a little bit because I thought ha it's it's similar to Evernote. And it just like has a couple more types of content that you can embed.
So you can embed YouTube videos. That's nice, but it's like really making such a big difference until I understood kind of how relational databases work and how you can build your own database of knowledge. And that was super helpful. I'm teaching that also kind of in the remotes knowledge, documentation course, like how to set up your own relational database for our organization so that your institutional knowledge is properly properly accessible and can be edited.
And in an effective and efficient way, and if it can be done for an organization, it can also be done for an individual. So the way I structure my notion notion spaces is I have like a high level database, which includes three sections. So these are three tables. One is projects, kind of anything with a end states and kind of like, which is kind of timely.
The second is areas and products. And so areas and products is something like health is an area. Wealth is an area learning and development is an area. And so these serve primarily as primary keys or tags for the third section, the third section are resources. Resources is just. Let's say if I were to set up a podcast tomorrow, I would probably create a resource called podcasting.
And I would just put all the information to the half into this into this resource and this resource, I would then tag to an area which is called maybe creativity or business or whatever. And the interesting thing is, is that you can tag resources to multiple areas if it's relevant. And so that's the way how currently organizing for.
I don't know if it's the best thing in the world, but it works for me. Yeah. It's definitely a very powerful yeah. It's relational database can set up business process. Yeah, like I mean, for knowledge basis, I use obviously my own app, but for anything else to do with business and processes, I can definitely recommend notion as well.
Okay. Yeah. Cool. It gives us a very good overview of what you're doing and how you're doing it. So I guess to wrap up a bit, like, who would you like to see next on the podcast? Great question. Did you have Paula Kieron ARN? I didn't actually know. 1 one of my favorite people on the internet.
Great such such a great dude. I mean like one thing that, the reason why I'm saying Paula Kronos, because in on Twitter you see a lot of creators or a lot of voices converging and using similar formulas and, you know, writing threads doing certain types of messages, like the Q and a style.
Doesn't give a fuck. And he is, he likes weird shit and he posts about weird shit and it's amazing. He's just like being himself. So I would say have him on a pretty, pretty widely read from what I can tell, he has his own podcast where he's interviewed close to a hundred people already now. Great conversation.
And yeah, he also has to constantly learn about new people and new areas in order to be able to hold a conversation. So I guess he would be my recommendation for you. Awesome. Yeah. Well, I'll get in touch with him. All right. So thanks a lot art for being on a podcast. And if people want to find out about you about what you're currently doing or follow you, what's the best way for them to.
Yeah, I guess most active them on Twitter. The handle is at art Lapsinch it's a R T L a P I N S C H. art Lapsinch. Then I have a website called Very, very similar where I write long form blog posts about stuff I'm learning. So kind of how the, on the course creator community was how, for example, the experience was.
Builds the remote first company and also have a long blog post about it, for example, how it was to create and produce a music album. And then I guess, for, for anything related to remote remote work knowledge and the online course, the website is called remote So it's like remote and the fabric of your clothes or remote fabrics icon.
Yeah. Thanks, man.
Cool. Thanks for having me on man.

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