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Take Control – Post #1

In the past six months, human have evolved more quickly than at any other time in our history. We’ve changed the way we work, socialize, eat, play and travel. We’ve morphed from a gregarious animal who by choice mingled and rubbed shoulders, to a race of isolated, small clumps of people, who interact with other small clumps, virtually. The Cloud played a critical role (more here on how it did), but people have adapted rapidly to working and living in the same four walls.

Or have they? Drugs, alcohol, domestic violence are on the rise, and COVID’s impact has, unfortunately, not been limited to our mental and physical health. It has suddenly unemployed many millions who now face financial ruin. Our company, Klippas Technologies inc. (KTi), is 4 months old: a child born of the pandemic’s impact on own situations. It is the very modern model of a virtual company. It has no office, no physical presence, and its product is sold from a website as a digital service. And all of this is conducted in digital space.

Remote Teamwork? Yes, but wow, what teamwork! My partner and I share documents, both editing the same one at the same time. We can get hold of each other at any time and talk face to face. We sip our coffees and plan the day, never lose a minute commuting, and then share the results in our Microsoft Teams channels. The speed at which one can accomplish things these days is astonishing.

In April, when we decided to launch KTi, we had never developed software for Microsoft. Newbies, wading into the most comprehensive software development environment available today. We had to learn a new technology stack (all of Microsoft’s offerings and options to determine which ones we needed), a new computer language (Javascript), and then design and build our app. We did it in 3 months without leaving our homes. Physically, that is. Mentally we consumed thousands of pages of dreadful documentation and obtuse language! And we were helped, of course, by our 40 years of software development experience. But still, remote teamwork played a critical part; we could do all this and instantly contact each other when we felt a need.

In the midst of doing all this, we realized how lucky we are to have the skills we’re using. Perhaps we could help others do the same? Our COVID Response is a free course and free consulting to anyone wishing to launch a Startup. The course is called Take Control: Seven Steps to Independence©. The course is available now and you can download it for free without registration, here.

The reaction has been mixed: some people love the course and its associated forum, The Launchpad. Others are daunted by its complexity and its focus on the theory behind launching and running a company.

To help remedy this last issue, this series of posts will apply the course’s theory to a real Startup. We’ll avoid infringing any other parties’ rights, by using  KTi as our model. We’re building a Personal Assistant app for Microsoft Teams: Kippa – Reminders for Microsoft Teams.

Take Control’s Seven Steps to Independence are listed below, along with a few words on how each one was used to shape KTi, and especially, to help us design Kippa – our Reminder app for Microsoft Teams.

The seven steps are:

  1. The Idea – How to find a product or service to sell (your Solution).  We’ll tell you how we came up with an idea for a physical product and then abandoned that in favour of a digital one, our Microsoft Teams Personal Assistant, Kippa.
  2. Validate the Idea – How to validate the idea, ensuring that it has a suitable market, enabling you to set goals on which to build a vision and your hopes. We’ll tell you how we validated the idea for Kippa – Reminders for Microsoft Teams;.
  3. Design your Solution – Teaches you how to use the market research you did in Step 2, to design a solution that your prospects will buy and keep on buying. The posts will cover how we used this process to design Kippa, Reminders for Microsoft Teams’ functions to satisfy a Microsoft Teams users’ needs and wants.
  4. Market – Covers how to market your solution. Finding prospects, giving them the information they need, qualifying and nurturing them until they become hot leads, ready for you sales process. We’ll reveal the way we market Kippa – Reminders for Microsoft Teams.
  5. Implement – How to register your company and make it real, and then how to run it including legal, banking and accounting. We’ll write about how we used this process to register KTi, and start operating as a company.
  6. Sell – How to turn the leads generated by your marketing into clients who keep coming back for more. Marketing and Sales are skills you CAN learn. In these posts we’ll cover the ways we go about selling Kippa – Reminders for Microsoft Teams.
  7. Continuous Process Improvements – Shows you how to iterate your way to a better and better solution over time, improving customer satisfaction, gaining referrals and a stronger and more stellar reputation. Here we’ll write about the ways we use CPI to improve Kippa – Reminders for Microsoft Teams, and KTi’s operations.

Stay tuned for second post in the series. We’ll not only cover how to think creatively, but where to look for inspiration and opportunities.