How we build things, from products to teams. Founders Forum recap.

A big thank you to John Barnett, Co-founder of Supermoon, and David Siglin, Principal Design at Stitchfix, for their fantastic presentation at our Founders Forum event. With lively AI-generated graphics and anecdotes from Barnett’s time at Facebook and Instagram, they gave us a peek into their experiences building various projects – from apps to workflows and collaborative teams. Let’s dive into the highlights of their insightful talk!

Build the right team.

Optimize for passion and openness over raw talent and ability. Great the right team, not the dream team. (Who knows, they may become your dream team.)

  • Focus on building a web, not becoming a single hub. This creates trust horizontally, collaboration, and avoids one point of failure.
  • Know each team member’s starting point.
  • Be flexible about how your team is formed. (Flexibility was a thread pulled often over the talk.)
  • Strong opinions, loosely held. The idea of confidently expressing one’s beliefs with a willingness to adapt in the face of new evidence or perspectives.

Build the right collaboration

Be tight when defining success but loose with how it is actually achieved.

  • Be clear on what success means.
  • Constantly realign efforts and priorities. Ultimately, they should always point to the initial bullet: what does success mean?
  • Push information versus pull information. David shared how his team shares updates every Friday. It’s expected so people don’t feel that need to constantly ask for the information they know will be pushed out.
  • Have a healthy overlap, in knowledge and skills. This goes back to avoiding a single point of failure.

Build the right product.

Love the problem, trust your gut, explore hypotheses.

  • Once you understand the problem, learn to love it. Because, you’re working to solve it.
  • For hypotheses to test against, and find ways to get reactions and responses quickly even if it’s just on a whiteboard.
  • Build a minimum lovable product. It’s not just viable but people love it.

David and John also shared some additional resources:

  • The Speed of Trust, Stephen Covey
  • Competing Against Luck, Clayton Christenson
  • Double Diamond, problem framing and solving
  • A PM’s Guide to Working with Designers, by VP of Product at Figma

Thanks to those that attended – you got to see and hear some additional tidbits from behind the scenes at some pretty big companies – and if you missed it, we hope to see you at the next Founders Forum.

April Founders Forum: Profit First: Getting to Profitability with a Product/Service Quickly 
April 16th, 3:30pm at Village Launch

See you soon!