Transcript | From Microsoft Product Manager to AI founder | Nick Gomez (Founder & CEO @Inkeep )
The transcript from my podcast with Nick Gomez
Nick Gomez 0:00
So if you can provide, like direct assistance for how to use your product, especially technical products, like what we target, during those initial phases, you're really going to reduce the time to activation or like the time for the user to be able to see value in your product. With help with activation and conversion, and then ongoing, ongoing basis, if someone has like a chatbot, that can actually be helpful to them in their particular unique scenarios. If they have it on hand throughout the lifecycle of that main customer for you, you know, they're much more likely to go try new features that you might develop, to be able to, like expand their scenarios and use cases as they themselves grow.
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And in general, just be like, so if you can provide like direct assistance for how to use your product, especially technical products, like what we target. During those initial phases, you're really going to reduce the time to activation, or like the time for the user to be able to see value in your product. With help with activation and conversion. And then ongoing ongoing basis, if someone has like a chatbot that can actually be helpful to them in their particular unique scenarios. If they have it on hand throughout the lifecycle of that main customer for you, you know, they're much more likely to go try new features that you might develop, to be able to, like expand their scenarios and use cases as they themselves grow. And in general, just be like a more satisfied but also more active user of your product.
Max Matson 1:43
Hey there, everyone. Welcome back to future product. Today, I have the pleasure of sitting down with Nick Gomez, the founder and CEO and keep a YC backed startup that turns your docs into an AI powered search and check copilot. Nick, thank you so much for joining me today. For sure. Thanks for having me.
Of course. So I'm pretty interested in your product. But before we get into that, let's start with a little bit of background on you. Where did you come from kind of where did you get the idea for this? And how long have you kind of been sitting on this idea?
Nick Gomez 2:13
Yeah, absolutely. So I worked at Microsoft for three years. Basically, I was a product manager. And I focused on developer experiences. So both defining feature sets and platforms that we were going to build out and create for developers. But also thinking about the whole developer experience from the moment they come to your documentation, to the first steps in them trying the product to basically how do we support them? And like how do we are, how are we responsive, regardless of which support channel they use to talk to us. So that's what I worked on for three years and focus on that, particularly in the identity products. And so basically, any app that anyone ever developed needs authentication.
And so we basically made it easy for app developers to not have to worry about how to add authentication to their apps, and be able to just focus on, you know, their particular business logic or actual scenarios. So I worked a lot in this space and thought a lot about this. You know, I'm a developer, myself, by training. And so, you know, I come from the mindset of being a developer.
And when I saw at Microsoft was that like, regardless of how many resources we had, and we had, you know, dedicated customer support teams. And we had product managers and engineers who were like, very lively on the different support channels, it still never felt like we were able to, like provide the level of support we wanted to, to all developers, regardless of kind of wording, where they touched with points with us. And I think that's just like due to the nature of technical support or developer support, right? You have to look at logs, you really have to deeply understand the product and the technical aspects. And that requires like a certain skill set. And folks, so just it has been like really hard historically to be able to do this well. And so that's where it came from. And then obviously, like, once the LM technology really took off, I saw a huge opportunity to be able to help companies be able to do that.
Max Matson 4:15
Gotcha. Gotcha, makes a lot of sense. So jumping back to kind of your experience with Microsoft, being, you know, a senior product manager there and being technical. What was kind of the experience there? Like, did you feel kind of a pull from different departments that I hear a lot of product people talking about where it's like, you have to kind of be juggling all of the different departments and keeping peace and all that stuff?
Nick Gomez 4:41
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, honestly, I felt very privileged to be in that position of being able to work with all these different teams. So you know, one day you'll be working with the designer, I'm like, what should the UX look like? And then the next day, I'm working with engineers on the UI design, and then you also work with legal and find and enhance and marketing and all these different teams. But also, as a product manager, you're responsible for, like really understanding what our customers in my case developers looking for.
And so that meant being very attentive to our support channels, and folks, and both in our like, customer support teams, but also documentation teams, because they heard some feedback from customers, etc. So really, you are kind of at the center of it all trying to be able to leverage everyone's skills to be able to deliver a good product. But I love that it was great. Being able to have those people with that those experiences and those expertise. For me to work with. It's kind of like a startup is somewhat similar. And being a founder of a startup is quite similar, except you're doing all of those same roles yourself, right, we'll have to
Max Matson 5:52
delegate this to myself real quick.
Nick Gomez 5:55
Yeah, and then from the like, being a technical person in that role, I think it really helps, especially when working on developer products, you need the empathy for what it means to be a developer to be able to be able to develop a product. And so that I think that served me well. And you know, API's are really important. So oftentimes, I was in charge of like, figuring out and talking through with all the different teams that the API design, obviously, in collaboration with engineering, and other folks, but you know, I felt really privileged to be in a position where we could both define a little bit of the technical aspects of what the product will look like in the end, but be able to work with all these teams to make it happen.
Max Matson 6:37
Right on. It's something that I've talked about with a few guests. And then I think some of the bigger companies are starting to do Airbnb as an example of kind of splitting the product title into two kinds of factions. Right. So you've got the the technical, heavy, and then you've got kind of like a more of a GTM, marketing focus PM. How do you view that kind of shift? Does that make sense to you? Or are you You obviously lean more towards the technical side? Right.
Nick Gomez 7:03
Yeah, I mean, I think, for developer products, in particular, the split doesn't make as much more sense. Because oftentimes, the your TTM, and marketing is your developer experience, right? And your, you know, the, the plg type motions that you see, so you don't necessarily need dedicated marketing or sales, that sort of thing. Oftentimes, your your dev x and your product speaks for itself. In companies like Airbnb, where it might really be different, where like PMS, the technical teams are more focused on like, feature development for the SAS or consumer facing, versus, you know, they're not necessarily focused on like, you know, traditional marketing channels. That separation might make more sense, I think.
Max Matson 7:53
Got it. Got it. Thank you for the perspective. So so that kind of been the case moving forward from there. When you, you know, went to found in keep, obviously, your your YC backed? What was that experience? Like? What did you always know that you wanted to do? yc? Was that kind of a goal that you would set for yourself?
Nick Gomez 8:13
Yeah, it's an interesting question. So two parts. So how I got interested in it was a lot of friends during my time at MIT. So I went to MIT as an undergrad. Gotcha. They worked at YC companies, as interns, or you know, eventually hired as full time employees. So my co founder, actually, who worked at Twitch, which was a YC company, but I knew many times. And so that's kind of like, how I heard about it. And it just seemed like a lot of cool startup, tech companies were YC backed. So that's gonna get seated in my brain. And then once I started to look to do a startup, it was kind of obvious for me to go for it. Yeah. So that was like, how it came about. And then the, like, the actual experience was amazing.
I think it's totally worth it. Almost all of our initial customers were YC companies. So it gives you like, you know, access to that network of all the different companies that have come before you. But I think even beyond kind of the networking aspects, and being connected to VCs and customers and all that stuff, just having a bunch of people that are in your batch, and therefore are going through like the exact same stages that you are right, you know, they're either pivoting or they're figuring out how do we do b2b sales for the first time. They're facing a lot of the challenges that you are. And so you just get to like bounce off ideas and learn from other folks who are like in a very similar stage. And they're all super ambitious and smart and have really unique perspectives and stuff. So it's, it's just like a great environment to be around. Yeah, that's my take on it.
Max Matson 9:57
Awesome. Awesome. See, you mentioned kind of a lot Your initial clients being YC companies, right? How have you as you've kind of evolved and gone forward with the company? How has that motion changed? What What kind of, you know, GTM kind of motion? Are you guys looking at? And how do you think that that's influenced by being a developer?
Nick Gomez 10:16
Yeah, I think we saw lean pretty heavily on, like, direct introductions to folks. So that can be through my c network and my team that work through now customers, who have used us and are like big fans and are willing to advocate for us, they'll make intro sometimes. So we've focused primarily on leveraging those those networks to get in touch with folks. But we are looking at like opening up to tomorrow self serve, type of experience, you know, we've always been a big fans of fuel gene, we want to make this type of experience accessible to any developer product, something we're looking forward to, in the near future.
Max Matson 10:54
Awesome. So that being said, I, I've been kind of hearing this, pretty recently, it's just that it's easy. Everybody wants to be a pod company, right? Everybody strives to that. But a lot of people kind of try to force in the early days, a kind of plg motion, it sounds like you guys have taken the time to do the need finding, get your Lighthouse customers figure it out, get their feedback. So that being said, what processes do you guys use to collect customer feedback to you know, work their kind of feedback into the product? Yeah, that's
Nick Gomez 11:28
a good question. I feel like because we haven't opened it up, we don't necessarily have the volume, where we can't keep up with it. So we just have, like, you know, connect channels with all of our customers, and they ask us directly for whatever they want. And so we, you know, we prioritize based based on like, those different requests, but we're pretty like, you know, we're, we're still a small company. So we take, like, the kind of initiative to just be as hands on as possible with all of our customers really, regardless of whether they're seed stage starting companies, to big companies with lots of, we have channels with like, 50 plus people in the channels, which are always fun. We like to be very, very hands on with all our customers and hear directly from them.
Max Matson 12:20
Right on, right on. So just in case people aren't familiar, can we walk through in keep and just kind of who it's for what exactly it does, and how you would position it?
Nick Gomez 12:30
Yeah, absolutely. So in keep, we basically help developer companies with developer products, right? Take all of their technical documentation, their API reference, their GitHub issues, their forums, their chats on, like their communities, like Slack or discord, take all of that content, and provide certain chat experiences that they can then provide to their end users, ie developers. And so people embed this our chat experiences, or search experiences and a few different ways. So it can go in like the search bar in your documentation, which is like natural point for a lot of developer companies and developer products.
But people can also add it as a Slack bot or as a discord bot to their communities, which again, a lot of developer products tend to have. We've also had folks have like the little chat widget thing like at the bottom right. And they can add that to their landing page or in product. And we also offer an API. So we've had folks at us basically generate, use our API's to generate code snippets, that then they insert into like notebook like experiences. There's like a lot of different ways in which you can incorporate it really ends up being like whatever wherever, whatever the company feels, is kind of the natural interface with their end users, is where our product ends up.
And in terms of like, the value that folks get out of this, it's really it's what we talked about at the beginning, which is like being able to support developers at scale. And so this doesn't mean like it helps not spend, you know, hundreds of hours from your product or support or engineering teams. Answering kind of repetitive questions are really if access is like a filter.
So you get to focus on the novel questions that really can't be answered by any of the content that exists by your product. And so that helps product teams as well as documentation teams, or support teams focus on either improving the product itself or improving supporting content or documentation. And so that's that's been one major benefit, but the other one is and use a product person. I'm sure you agree but like the any barriers you can remove during the time that a customer in this case developers are evaluating or trying a product is going to improve your conversion and like just increase all your funnels, right.
So if you can provide like direct assistance for how to use your product, especially technical products, So, like what we target, during those initial phases, you're really going to reduce the time to activation or like the time for the user to be able to see value in your product. With help with activation and conversion, and then ongoing, ongoing basis, if someone has like a chatbot, that can actually be helpful to them in their particular unique scenarios. If they have it on hand throughout the lifecycle of that may a customer for you, you know, they're much more likely to go try new features that you might develop, to be able to, like expand their scenarios and use cases as they themselves grow. And in general, just be like a more satisfied but also more active user of your product.
Max Matson 15:43
Right on. Yeah, I think that's so important, right? Because it's especially when you're talking about plg companies where it's rather hands off from a customer support angle, you typically only hear when people are at their highest point of frustration, right? When they're like, You know what, I'm sick of this product, I'm going to turn, this is my last shot. And I'm probably not going to reply to the email that I had sent by their CS person realistically. So yeah, you're kind of intervening four or five steps before that, when somebody is first starting to feel that pain point. Right?
Nick Gomez 16:14
Exactly. And sometimes what's really interesting is like, yes, it helps with all the different pain points. And when you find developers, as an audience, they really love to self troubleshoot. They actually don't like, you know, waiting around for someone to be able to answer them if they can do it themselves. Because they're very willing to try these types of systems, especially if they get the confidence that they're actually like, good, right. And so it's, they're just like a perfect audience for this type of product. But interestingly, like, even beyond the pain points, you don't even necessarily need a pain point, something sometimes you like a scenario, you're like, Okay, this is what I want to do with this product. It sounds like from their landing page or their docks or whatever, it's going to help me with my scenario. But can I just ask something like, exactly how do I accomplish this scenario with this particular product? And being able to give that type of guy like, personalized on demand guidance at the very beginning of someone's life cycle with your product is really powerful?
Max Matson 17:13
Absolutely, absolutely. I mean, how many people stay up at night? You know, with that very question in mind, right? Yeah, no, that's fantastic. I also wanted to kind of point out something else that I thought was really novel and interesting about in keep, which is that you guys, you cite your sources, right. So there's kind of a grounded truth, that it's always referring back to would you mind kind of explaining that a little bit? Yeah, absolutely.
Nick Gomez 17:40
So whenever someone uses the chat, are, whenever we generate an answer, we both in line, like in the sentences of the response, have little footnotes, like the column citations that lead you to like, okay, it's pulling this sentence or this part of the answer from this particular source. And then at the very end, you get these nice preview cards as well of like, Hey, these are the, you know, three or four sources that they use. And this can point to both documentation, but also GitHub or, you know, in the forums or like Slack, that type of thing. So really help someone be able to have like a global search of all your different channels and places where content about your product might might exist.
And like, we've we've definitely heard this before, where it's like, even if the bot is slightly wrong, or didn't quite answer the question that the user was asking for. Often the sources lead them to the right link path. And they're able to tie their follow up with a bot with like clarifying questions or clarifying details. Or they just find like the most relevant content that's going to help them unblock themselves. And so being able part of it for us. developers expect like authenticity and authenticity, like providing these sources and being open about like, Hey, this is not going to be accurate 100% of the time. Here's like helpful things that that might be able to guide you in the right direction. We do a lot of work to try to make sure that it is accurate as as accurate as possible. But the user can always reference what's cited to learn more, explore more, or double check the logic.
Max Matson 19:18
Perfect. I think that makes so much sense with a developer audience too, right? Because these aren't like helpless people. These are people who can, you know, when given the technical knowledge can easily implement it themselves? Right? So it makes a lot of sense. Gotcha. Can I ask you a question? How do you see an experience like in keep potentially working for other audiences outside of engineers, do you envision you know, in the future ever trying to target other audiences?
Nick Gomez 19:44
Yeah, for sure. So we are focused on developer products just because we also feel like it's been like a neglected sector. So like, if you look at traditional support tools like an intercom or Zendesk developer don't even like to a lot of times interact with those because they feel like salesy or more Marketing, and you'll never see a code snippet in any of those experiences. So we're focused on these particular types of audiences to start, but honestly, we've already had inbound from folks who, like have a like either like a b2b SAS Type product, or some type of really like technical product, even some internal use cases were like, Hey, we have some internal developer docs for our own engineering teams, we would love to bring this internally. So we've actually, you know, have worked with a few companies on those types of scenarios. Cool. So we're open to if folks are interested in you know, this technology does, like those cases have succeeded in the scenarios that they were looking for. Right? Yeah, someone's interested in that for sure. Give us
Max Matson 20:44
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I mean, it makes sense, right, like institutional knowledge is such a crucial aspect to I mean, any department I mean, engineers, I think kind of come to the forefront. When you think about that, just because you have a code base, you have, you know, all these kind of things that in the scope of your company's history need to be thought of when you're determining kind of your next step. But I think that equally that could be applied to any department right? Makes a lot of sense. Now, there's a quote, I forget if it was from your website, or your LinkedIn, I apologize, but it's a chat GPT like experiences are easy to demo, but hard to ship. And that really stood out to me. Would you mind kind of elaborating on that a bit?
Nick Gomez 21:25
Yeah, for sure. So we've talked to, you know, in the order of hundreds of companies, were really excited about being able to use a lens and narrative AI for a bunch of different use cases, but one of the primary ones is exactly what we're talking about being able to assist customers with information and knowledge about the product. And what we found is that a lot of them have tried either through like a hackathon, or they put like an engineer or two on like a two week project to try to spin something up. And like today, the end, the tooling keeps getting better and better. So people are able to get started and spin something up. That's like, relatively decent. And it's exciting to be able to see that with that like ease of use. But what we see is these types of companies, they often that type of like demo or proof of concept, often doesn't like meet quite the quality threshold that these types of companies are looking for, for something during an expose to their end users. Right? Because if it's misleading, if it's not a good experience, it might cause more frustration than it actually like, alleviates. And so we've we've found that there's like a big gap between the like the first zero to, you know, 50 or 60%. And then the last like, half right, in terms of just into the state where you're able to share something with end users.
Max Matson 22:43
Gotcha, it makes a ton of sense. I think that trust element has been, you know, I definitely think as a market AI and you know, using that term, loosely, right. But, um, AI technology, kind of stemming from the generative AI boom from open AI hasn't necessarily crossed the chasm yet, I'd say we definitely are kind of at early adopter status for the most part. So what you just said, kind of makes a lot of sense for how we kind of push and cross over that chasm is, you know, not only providing an experience that looks good, and sounds good in a demo, but also is trustworthy to the end user.
Nick Gomez 23:21
Yeah, exactly. Exactly. And so let's say right, so go ahead. No, no, no, after you. Yeah, so quality is definitely like a blocker for a lot of these companies and folks, but I think even beyond that there's other dimensions to this type of product that I'm really interested in, especially from from a product perspective. So for example, the chat conversations that people have, oftentimes, they ask a lot more questions. So this type of solution than they would traditional support channels, going back to earlier where like, you know, oftentimes, they don't actually try to talk to someone until like, it's like a really bad problem, or like, we're really frustrated. Versus with this type of product.
There's they don't have that element. And it's immediate. So we've seen volumes where like the the, the number of questions people ask this type of system just dwarfs what people see through their traditional support channels, or even their communities, like forums, or slack or discord. And so these user conversations are really authentic in that they're asking every single thing that comes up to hide, all right, or every single issue that they can come across during their implementation. And so it's just like a rich source of product insights. And so our platform, you know, obviously focuses on primarily verse quality, but beyond that, like helping you take those conversations, and be able to get actionable from that, right. So be able to understand, what are the pain points that people are talking about? What are the features that they're asking for? When was the bot not able to answer a question because it can find good content for it? Right? And so all of these are like tangible things that product teams Documentation team support teams can act on to actually improve the product.
Max Matson 24:58
I see. gotcha, that makes a ton of sense. So from a from a business perspective, one thing that I was wondering about that, I think is kind of a pressing question for a lot of AI startups is going forward? How do you kind of view the concept of moat and how innkeeper is moated? How do you kind of view the strategy around that?
Nick Gomez 25:18
Yeah, for sure. And we've heard this a ton when we were fundraising. Yeah, I'm sure. Love to ask that question. I think for us, it's like, if if we're just able to make customers really happy, we'll figure out what the continue value proposition is. Right? So things are always going to change and evolve. And I think this has always been historically true. It just feels more permanent now, because it's changing so fast, and the technology moving forward so quickly.
But I think that's, that's always true. There's always like initial stepping stones for almost every product. Right? So our focus is just like with whatever the current state is, how do we maximize the value that we can provide customers? And like us being able to figure out how to do that on a continual basis is just like the the purpose of us opening, right. And so yeah, you know, I think right now, it's primarily in quality and the experiences around it. But I think moving forward, the other aspects, like the analytics and insights, that I was just mentioning, like those types of additional workflow type features become more important over time, right? Because you don't just want the value of the q&a, you want the value of the entire like, end to end lifecycle of what that having that type of product means for you and your interactions with end users. So that's where we will continue to focus on us as we move forward.
Max Matson 26:38
Awesome. No, I think that's the right way to look at it. As long as you're providing that like top tier experience. That's all you can do. No 100%. So another question I was, I wanted to ask you, it's just something that I toyed around with in my head quite a bit. When we're thinking about kind of the giants, right, like the Microsoft's who have so much capital and so much talent in the form of like researchers and technical folks working on their AI products. For us smaller startup AI products. One thing that I wonder about is how quickly budgets will get filled, right? Because there are so many different AI tools that work together pretty well, but almost seem like, one thing I worry about is the larger companies kind of swooping in and offering like a platform. Right? Have you thought about that at all? And do you have any kind of, you know, thoughts on how we could work that out?
Nick Gomez 27:32
Yeah, no, absolutely. This is something that I think a lot of startups are thinking about focusing or thinking about, which is like, it does feel like the incumbents in this wave are moving faster than they have in previous kind of innovation case, right. And so and they have kind of a distribution advantage, and the tech in the in the they happen to own the actual like IP, that powers all the platforms. So it's definitely I think, more challenging than it has historically been in terms of an answering. I mean, I think it's very similar to what we were just talking about, which is like, just focus on like, the your customers, what they're asking you for, etc, and plugging into their particular workflows, and being able to provide really delightful and useful experiences. And I think they'll guide you like, I think it's still true that startups are able to move more quickly and be more responsive to their customers than larger companies. So even if they have more capital, or distribution advantage, oftentimes they don't have like the scrappiness and ability to move more quickly and, you know, have Slack channels with every single one of their customers, etc. Really, like the only type of defense I guess, but I think that's always been true. You know, that it's always been a question like, why would a giant just sidestep and squash me? Right? I think that has always been the case. And I don't I don't know if the solution to that really has changed that much. Except, you know, just have to be even sharper with kind of what we do in execution.
Max Matson 29:10
Right? It's got to be scrappy and fast. Exactly. Yeah. How do you guys? How do you guys manage to produce quickly? Are you guys you know, do you use agile any type of frameworks for managing work in that way?
Nick Gomez 29:23
Yeah, I mean, we use Scrum and just like traditional Task Managers, but we're still also like a relatively small team. So it there's not like a huge burden in terms of, you know, processes, etc. I think we just like first hires, we focused on finding folks who we would trust to make product decisions without our like, you know, oversight or anything. And so just having those types of folks early on, is really important to be able to move quickly and not have a bunch of process etc. You know, as we grow more, I'm sure some of that will come into play. We'll have to figure out some some more, you know, methodical ways of going about things. exciting, but so far, it's basically like customer has needs we go deliver on those eats. Whatever, whoever can work on it. Yeah. So that's that's kind of our mindset or approach right now.
Max Matson 30:13
Gotcha. And how big is your team now? We're at five. Okay, gotcha. Awesome. still relatively small. Oh, very cool, though. You mentioned you had a co founder. Are they also technical?
Nick Gomez 30:24
Yeah. So he's He's the least technical, but for the first four months, it was just me hand coding.
Yeah. So, you know, I've started to focus more on the like, salesy marketing type of stuff, or just doing more outbound, that type of thing. But I still, you know, I'm a developer pilot 50% of the time. So we're all, you know, in all of our first hires, were engineers as well. That's, that's kind of been our focuses, have folks who can build and without a lot of oversight, but still have relatively good product sense.
Max Matson 31:02
When it comes to those GTM things? I'm just interested. I think I always like, you know, and I think any engineers who are listening to this should be impressed by the fact that you have an all engineering team, it's it definitely says a lot, right? When you invest very heavily in product, which clearly you guys have, as well as investing in those relationships with the early customers. But I am interested just on a personal level, what how you feel about like the balance as a founder, right, being technical, being a product mind, and then also having to kind of pivot to distribution? And I'm sure a lot of LinkedIn and email messaging.
Nick Gomez 31:37
Yeah, I mean, it's hard, but it's hard to somewhat balance. And like, it's definitely a transition. Like I said, at the beginning, I was building full time, and now I'm having to learn, okay, I can't be building full time, we need to be worth the rest of everything else that needs to be done. So it's just I guess, it's, it's learning to accept that to trust the folks you hire, to, you know, be able to take ownership and do the things that you were doing previously. And I think that just gets more pronounced, the more you grow, right. So like, at some point, I won't even be like I realized, at some point, you become, like, picking the right team, because your main role, as well as like, you know, fundraising, and all that different stuff.
So it's just me, it's really like, accepting that, like, you're, the what's asked of you is gonna change every step of the way. And you just prioritize and try to get good at whatever is needed at that time. Even if it wasn't your background, like, I don't have a background in b2b sales. I did work with a ton of companies during my time at Microsoft, but they were all like, pre arranged for me. And we would do like, you know, kind of previews and that type of thing. But it was all like, the demand was already there. They want to try the product. And I was like, Okay, I'll do it. So, I didn't get in the cadence of being able to, to engage with, you know, fortune 500 companies, as well as startups, the full range of companies, but I was never trying to sell to them. And that's something I've definitely had to learn to do. So I think, yeah, if you're a founder trying to do a start up, just like being cognizant that your, your definition of your role is gonna lead continually changes as your company evolves. Yeah, yeah,
Max Matson 33:17
there has to be the master of many hats, right? Well, what was it that initially motivated you to to become a founder? Have you always known that you wanted to go into entrepreneurship?
Nick Gomez 33:27
Yeah, I think so. Like, in high school, I was building websites for like, my stuff for like a few local businesses. Even before that, like in I remember, like elementary school, I was actually got kicked out of school, because I was like, buying snacks from like, like a grocery store, and then going and reselling it at school. Then they had like, a shop at the school where they sold snacks and stuff. So by this, I mean, just like, slightly undercut them. So I think kind of like intrapreneurial, you know, nature and me. But in terms of, I also feel very privileged to be in like the decision that that I am. So like, I was born in Colombia, and I came here to the States when I was a. And I was just thinking like, and then if I hadn't moved here, I wouldn't probably have had the same opportunities that that I have had. So I wouldn't have been able to go MIT probably wouldn't have been able to join Microsoft, where it would have been a lot a lot harder, right? So in some sense, I feel like a responsibility in a way to be like, Okay, I've been giving, being given, like, the opportunities to be able to do all these great things and be in this position where I can start a company and have people who will back me and have a network and so I feel like I have to leverage it in some way and be able to act on it. So yeah, that part of it is that as well.
Max Matson 34:56
Awesome. Yeah. And feel free to answer this to whatever level you comfortable with. But something I have noticed is that I do think that a lot of I've seen and met a lot of really driven founders who do come from immigrant backgrounds. Do you feel that that is a driving force in your entrepreneurship? And what makes you want to achieve?
Nick Gomez 35:16
Yeah, I think it. I mean, I can't speak for other folks. But there is an aspect of like,
Wow, you are so lucky to have all these opportunities to be in a country like the US where entrepreneurship is possible. And, you know, a lot of bureaucracy and government stuff they have to deal with, but it's like, still less than a lot of other places, and you still have a lot of opportunity here, that would be a lot harder elsewhere. So I think that that's definitely a factor potentially for for these types of folks. Yeah,
Max Matson 35:49
makes sense. Makes sense. So I've got two last questions for you. The first one is, what advice would you give to a younger version of you?
Nick Gomez 36:01
Oh, man, it's a good question. I think just to see everything as like a learning opportunity, right? Like, any challenges or any things that come up, whether, like, really hard or unexpected, or whatever. They're just like, an opportunity to, like, get more perspective or learn something new, etc. And so like, I don't know, I felt like, I mean, I still am sometimes, like, when I'm challenged by something new, like sometimes I'm a little anxious by it, right. But I think trying to, you know, remind myself and honestly, this advice for myself right now as well. That, you know, when when when that feeling of like a little bit of anxiousness comes up, it often means that it's because there's like something potentially new for you to learn or like a new skill to develop that type of thing. And so yeah, I'd say that we get pretty good, time resistant. Like advice that could give
Max Matson 37:02
fantastic advice. It's, you know, it's good advice when it's still relevant. Right. And, okay, awesome. So then final question for you. What's next spring
Nick Gomez 37:12
keep? Yeah, so like I mentioned, we're focused on trying to bring that self serve experience in sometime in the near future. And I think that that'll be really exciting to start to try to build a community open it up to more folks hear feedback from folks that kind of different stages of the lifecycle than that we might have been engaging with so far. Yeah, and just just kind of excited to see more folks trying it on their own and then hearing back from from them, which is like a little scarier, right. handhold them were like, have a necessarily a slight connect really pink question. But that'll be interesting and fun experience for us as we move towards that.
Max Matson 37:52
Absolutely. I'm excited for you guys.
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