"Don’t ever be too prideful or big time for the people that help you along the way. "

Jordan Walker, COO & Partner - SoFriendly

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOUR INDUSTRY GOING?
Design and development, in general, is being replaced with “no-code” avenues, such as Webflow and Zapier, which allow people to better serve themselves and move even faster.

In addition, Upwork and Fivver help those who do not have the budget to hire full-time designers and developers. I see this leading to 3 buckets of entrepreneurs looking for design/dev work:

  1. DIYers: These people will just do the work themselves and not need any other external resources to complete their projects.
  2. In-between-ers: These people are typically just starting out and are too busy to do any design or development themselves. Generally, they hire freelancers in the market. This increasing demand will lead to lower and lower wages for designers and developers in general.
  3. Traditionals: These customers want their design and development to be the best and are willing to pay the extra price to have top talent on their project. Traditionals will drive the demand for agencies like SoFriendly.

Don’t ever be too prideful or big time for the people that help you along the way. You’ll need that support system as you embark on your journey of entrepreneurship.

- Jordan Walker - COO & Partner

WHAT PATTERNS, TRUTHS, OR INSIGHTS HAVE YOU GLEANED FROM YOUR EXPERIENCE?
A definite truth is that each idea (or business) comes down to execution on the founders’ end. Founders who love their idea and have the chops to make it go end up succeeding. Very rarely do you see a good idea with an “if we build it, they will come” attitude work out well.
Inside of that, founders who spend the necessary funds upfront to do it right will find more success than those who take the cheap route instead. I’ve also learned that taking the time to invest in people makes ALL the difference. Listen carefully to problems, pay attention to the details, and ask questions that get people to open up. You never know who believes in you, what connections could be made, or what ideas someone has to offer. I would say my companies are built on the back of this thesis.
WHY IS YOUR CITY AN ESPECIALLY GOOD PLACE FOR COMPANIES AND INNOVATORS TO GROW?
Orlando is a city that is on fire for growth and learning in general. So it just makes total sense that this city is perfect for a startup, or any company, to grow. It’s central to all major colleges and cities in the state of Florida, and I’d also say the excitement behind the UCF football and basketball teams have put Orlando on the map as a young, energetic place to stay and grow.
What two or three pieces of advice can you offer someone who wants to be successful as an entrepreneur or company in your city?

  1. Definitely network. Early on, show up to as many events as you can, befriend everyone, and be willing to help out the community. Helping others in the community goes such a long way, and has provided us so much.
  2. Join Headquarters in Kissimmee and talk to Kelly Trace. She knows literally everyone on the East Coast.
  3. Don’t ever be too prideful or big time for the people that help you along the way. You’ll need that support system as you embark on your journey of entrepreneurship. Promise.

SoFriendly

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