To maximize performance, manage your energy.
How do YOU create teams in the workplace?
iDoneThis: You do not yet realize your importance. You’ve only begun to discover your power! Join me, and I will complete your training! With our combined strength, we can end this destructive conflict, and bring order to the galaxy.
You: I’ll never join you!
iDoneThis: If only you knew the power of the Daily Done. Dundee never told you what happened to your father.
You: He told me enough! He told me you killed him!
iDoneThis: No, I am your father.
You: No. No! That’s not true! That’s impossible!
iDoneThis: Search your dones, you know it to be true!
You: Oh, huh, I didn’t know I could do that.
iDoneThis: Yeah, we just added that feature a few weeks ago. Just login and go to your calendar — there’s a search box up top.
Passing 10,000 users felt awesome and we did it with three dead simple techniques that anyone can execute.
1. Custom narratives for influential communities. I wrote in April how we made it to 5,000 users by constructing custom narratives for Hacker News, Reddit, and Lifehacker. We described iDoneThis to a community as both (a) a solution to the problems specific to that community with (b) an emotional hook that the community could relate to while (c) giving signals that reflect that we’re members of the community.
In choosing to do our startup in the San Francisco Bay Area, near the heart of the Valley — the world center for technology and innovation — and joining an incubator run by Xooglers, we didn’t expect our company’s most powerful and transformative lesson over the past 4 months to be that in the realm of the visceral, intangible, and emotional. What we learned first and foremost was the importance of vision and its resonance as an organizing principle.
A company is a group of people making a series of decisions. But what continues to bind individuals together in a common enterprise? And how do individuals with wildly variant opinions and selves make shared decisions? The lesson we learned is that vision, not profit motive or friendship, provides the emotional glue to stick together and the axioms upon which concrete decisions — resolving data and feedback — are made.
iDoneThis started out as a side project done over a weekend by Rodrigo and me with one simple mechanic in mind — a daily prompt to record what you did that day. In years prior, Rodrigo had kept a calendar to track daily progress and we thought to make that process easy for everyone. People liked it.
This guest blog post comes from Bassam Tarazi, founder of Colipera. Colipera uses both individual goal setting and the social pressure that comes from being a part of a group endeavor to help you stay committed to your goals.
We find plenty of reasons to not start; plenty of made up, self-sympathizing reasons to never see a dream or a goal through to the finish. Truth of the matter is, we allow those reasons to seep in like water in a punctured hull because we haven’t committed to the task at hand. We’re not devoted to the all-hands-on-deck mentality that is needed to keep the dream afloat.
We have a broad-based, loosely constrained web application. Our users engage with the site in a variety of different ways for a number of reasons. That makes it difficult to take a bunch of usage information and turn it into actionable data about how to position our product.
In searching for data to form the basis for a concise statement on our site’s value proposition, we ended up in an unexpected place. We had built an invite system which was super simplistic. A user could type in an email address and include an optional message. We would email that person with an invitation to sign up to use iDoneThis (no special referral URL, just a link to http://iDoneThis.com).
It turns out that when a user invited her friend to use iDoneThis, she used the optional message, not merely to say hello, but as an opportunity to pitch her friend on using iDoneThis. Our invite system ended up containing concise statements of how users use iDoneThis, how it works for that use case, and the value they derive from it — and gives us the language to express all of that.
The lean startup movement disdains the big press launch, and rightfully so. However, the polemical nature of the argument gives off the impression that press should never be sought. Quite the contrary, press should be sought ceaselessly. That being said, it’s important to understand the magnitude of traffic that you can expect from press and of what kind.
With the tiny investment of time that it took to draft two cold emails, we got a huge payoff in getting written up by Lifehacker. For most new startups, TechCrunch is a distant and unattainable goal, but Lifehacker will write about your weekend project if it’s got a compelling productivity hook. To boot, Lifehacker will drive traffic on the same order of magnitude as TechCrunch with users who may actually stick around.