Why I didn’t build my company in Silicon Valley

Hong Kong Street View Images

About nine years ago, I co-founded a company with Rick and Roy and created a product that helped businesses create forms and collect payments via Paypal. It ate up three of our lives and made life better for some small businesses. Honestly, this first product didn’t disrupt an industry. It probably only took a handful of clients from bigger competitors and we don’t have investors from Silicon Valley. Oursky has no valuation. Instead, we started getting paid to make other people’s products. Yes. We became an agency. We gave up being a sexy startup to become just another agency. And we got more jobs than we could handle, so we recruited more developers to help.

Now, we’re an agency that’s worked with listed companies like Yahoo! and Philips and created products with half a million active users. We’ve also opened up a satellite office…in Taiwan. I’m sharing this because I’m one of thousands of tech founders around the world who started companies not based in Silicon Valley that make money, have happy clients, and great team members.
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Why Wireframes Win Over Clients

wireframe

Why would anyone care about a barebones wireframe? Because basic layouts can help you demonstrate your competency to potential clients. Oursky’s working relationship with a client begins with understanding the problem they want to work and developing a user story. We share our early designs in the conversation to demonstrate our working style before they make their decision. This small investment builds trust with potential clients, helps secure contracts, and begins great working relationships.

The best part is, everyone can create a wireframe. Continue reading “Why Wireframes Win Over Clients”

Why our company’s remote work system failed

My company’s cornerstone principles is manage yourself. As long as you get stuff done, no-one will mind when you’re in the office. Remote work seemed like a logical next step for self management. We wanted to accommodate each of our 40+ team members’ working styles.

Since my company grew organically, without outside investment, and has less than 10% annual turnover for people who pass probation, I’m pretty sure we got something right.

Remote work wasn’t one of them. Continue reading “Why our company’s remote work system failed”

How Secure is your Messaging App? 7 Questions and 4 Examples

secure messaging apps
secure messaging apps
Chances are you use some sort of messaging service. How secure are your messages? Source: Pavan Trikutam.

Support it or not, the collection and selling of information has emerged as one of the most lucrative industries of the 21st century, accompanied by a growing violation of personal privacy. Naturally, then, using a secure messaging app has become a growing concern for consumers and businesses alike. Continue reading “How Secure is your Messaging App? 7 Questions and 4 Examples”

Code, Celebrations, and Cats: Oursky’s 2016 Year-In-Review

It’s almost 2017! Most would agree 2016 has been a roller coaster ride. Before Oursky breaks for the winter holidays, we’re taking the time to reflect on this year’s milestones, achievements, and learnings. We’re grateful to all our clients, friends, and extended Oursky family who challenged and supported us to grow as a company.  Find out what we’ve been up to below! Continue reading “Code, Celebrations, and Cats: Oursky’s 2016 Year-In-Review”

4 Dating Apps Created by Female Founders

Seeing as November 30th marks the social media campaign celebrating Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, we here at Oursky wanted to celebrate this global campaign by showcasing cool apps with female founders. Dating apps being as popular as they are nowadays (who would have though “swipe right” would become a household saying?), we suddenly asked ourselves how many were founded by women.

Because — let’s face it — the most successful apps like Tinder, Match or Badoo, were mostly founded by men and aren’t always what women are looking for.

http://giphy.com/gifs/drinking-12DrpAnEZPW3YI
Source: Giphy

Continue reading “4 Dating Apps Created by Female Founders”