Karthik Sridoran's journey to entrepreneurship began when he realized his finance career did not align with his passions. Seeking a change, he pursued an MBA from a top Indian business school and identified a shift in the talent economy. Highly skilled individuals sought more flexibility in their careers, leading to a boom in freelancing and remote work opportunities. However, Karthik noticed a gap in the market: existing freelance platforms lacked quality and reliability.
Determined to capitalize on this opportunity, Karthik co-founded Flexible, a company designed to pre-vet freelancers and pair them with suitable positions. Initially, the platform relied on a complex full-coded system, but when the market response was inadequate, Karthik turned to no-code tools, eventually leading the company towards $3 million in revenue.
Karthik's dissatisfaction with his finance career led him to entrepreneurship and the creation of the company Flexible
Identifying a shift in the talent economy, Flexible aimed to provide quality, pre-vetted freelance talent to companies
By leveraging no-code tools, Flexible scaled to $3 million in revenue, proving the power of a customer-focused, flexible approach
Karthik Sridoran pursued a career in finance, but he quickly realized it wasn't the right fit for him. He then decided to change his path and pursued an MBA from one of the top business schools in India. After completing his MBA, he opted not to follow the conventional path of finding a high-paying job and instead chose to become an entrepreneur. This decision led him to identify the shift in the talent economy, where top performers were seeking more flexibility in their jobs, embracing freelancing and remote work opportunities.
Karthik noticed that many freelancing platforms had negative perceptions and were known for their low-quality offerings. This observation sparked the idea for creating Flexible, a platform to pre-vet individuals and match them with suitable roles that offered the desired flexibility. Initially, Karthik focused on connecting freelancers with companies and earning a commission in between. However, he soon realized the need for a more scalable solution.
Karthik studied finance and later pursued an MBA from a top business school in India
He chose entrepreneurship over a conventional career path
Identified shifts in talent economy and the demand for more flexible job options
Observed the negative perception associated with existing freelancing platforms.
Karthik began building a complex platform using traditional coding methods, but when he brought it to market, he found that there was no demand for his product in its current form. This led him to explore the power of no-code tools to create a simpler, more accessible version of Flexible. Beginning with Google Sheets, he quickly progressed to building a full web app using a platform called Bubble.io. With the help of no-code tools, Karthik successfully scaled Flexible to generate three million dollars in revenue.
Some key lessons from Karthik's entrepreneurial journey include focusing on delivering customer value rather than obsessing over product creation, recognizing the power of no-code tools in facilitating non-technical individuals to build and innovate, and understanding the importance of bootstrapping a startup from the ground up, whether it's to attract investors or maintain full ownership of the company.
Transitioned from traditional coding to no-code tools for building Flexible
Utilized Google Sheets and Bubble.io for constructing the platform
Key takeaways: focus on customer value, power of no-code tools, and bootstrapping a startup
Shift in Talent Economy
Karthik noticed there are many high-performing individuals were seeking more flexibility in their jobs and careers, as freelancing and remote work were becoming increasingly popular and in demand. However, a majority of existing freelancing platforms had a poor perception due to their low quality, making it difficult for companies to find suitable candidates.
Recognizing the opportunity, Karthik aimed to pre-vet individuals, ensuring they were placed in the right position that provided the flexibility they desired. This idea led to the birth of Flexible, a company built entirely using no-code tools.
Shift in talent economy: High-performing individuals seeking flexibility in their jobs, leading to increased popularity of freelancing and remote work.
Poor perception of existing platforms: Difficult for companies to find suitable candidates due to low quality and unreliable freelancing platforms.
Pre-vetting of individuals: Ensuring the right candidates are placed in positions that provide them with the desired flexibility.
Flexible: Built entirely using no-code tools, resulting in three million dollars in revenue.
The story of Flexible highlights some essential lessons in entrepreneurship. Focusing on the customer value rather than the complexity of the product plays a significant role in business growth. Moreover, no-code tools demonstrate their power in flexibility and accessibility, allowing non-technical individuals to build and test their product efficiently. Lastly, bootstrapping a startup from the ground up proves to be a viable method of achieving success in today's competitive market.
Focus on customer value: Delivering value to customers is more important than building a complex product.
Power of no-code tools: No-code tools provide flexibility and accessibility, enabling non-technical individuals to build and test products.
Bootstrapping a startup: A viable method for business growth and success in today's market.
Flexible's Birth and Pivots
Flexible was born from the realization of a shift in the talent economy. High-performing individuals were seeking more flexibility in their jobs, and freelancing and remote work were becoming increasingly popular. Karthik noticed that many freelancing platforms had a negative reputation and were often providing low-quality results.
Karthik saw an opportunity in pre-vetting individuals, so he could place them in positions with the flexibility they desired. Initially, Karthik focused on connecting freelancers with companies and taking a commission in between. However, he soon realized he needed a better, more scalable method.
After building a complex, full-code platform and discovering there was no demand for it, Karthik turned to no-code tools. This is a testament to the power and efficiency of no-code tools in building and growing businesses.
Some key learnings in entrepreneurship from Flexible's story include:
Focus on delivering customer value rather than obsessing over the product itself. Solving problems and meeting customer needs leads to success.
No-code tools can be powerful, enabling non-technical people to accomplish more while also being more flexible and responsive to changing market demands.
Bootstrapping a startup from the ground up is possible and can lead to substantial growth and even the generation of revenue.
In summary, Flexible's birth highlights the following points:
Rising demand for flexibility in the talent economy.
Pre-vetting individuals for proper placement.
Focusing on scalability and customer value.
Utilizing no-code tools like Bubble.io for rapid development.
The importance of bootstrapping and staying agile in response to market shifts.
Leveraging No-Code Tools
Karthik recognized the rising demand for freelancers and remote jobs and capitalized on this by creating a platform to connect pre-vetted individuals with suitable job positions. To build Flexible, he utilized no-code tools such as Google Sheets and Bubble.io, allowing him to deliver an efficient solution without relying on complex code.
At the beginning of his journey, Karthik merely used Google Sheets to create the first version of Flexible. Google Sheets provided a simple yet powerful way to organize and manage data, enabling him to streamline the process of connecting freelancers with companies.
User-friendly platform for organizing data
Enabled quick implementation of the initial idea
Facilitated growth at an early stage
As the demand for his services grew, Karthik transitioned to using Bubble.io to build a full web app for Flexible. Bubble.io is a powerful no-code platform that allows users to create customizable web applications without any coding expertise.
No-code platform for creating web applications
Enabled scaling without coding expertise
Contributed to generating substantial revenue
Leveraging these no-code tools allowed Karthik to reduce bottlenecks in the development process and maintain flexibility while continuously improving the platform. It also empowered him to bootstrap his startup and focus on delivering value to customers, ultimately leading to the success of the Flexible platform.
Reaching $3 Million Revenue
Initially, Karthik attempted to connect freelancers with companies and take a commission in between but quickly realized there was a better way to scale the operation. After building a complex platform using full code, he found there was no demand for it. He then turned to no-code tools and launched the first version of Flexible using Google Sheets. Subsequently, Karthik moved to developing a full web app using Bubble.io.
By leveraging no-code tools, Flexible managed to generate $3 million in revenue. This demonstrates the potential of no-code tools to build powerful solutions and streamline the process of growing a company. Entrepreneurs can learn valuable lessons from Karthik's journey:
Focus on customer value rather than product-building: solving a problem or bringing someone to an outcome will deliver value and result in customers paying for the service.
No-code tools can be incredibly powerful: non-technical people can achieve a lot with these tools, reducing bottlenecks and enabling a focus on providing value and growing the company.
Bootstrapping is a viable approach: investors are more likely to invest in revenue-generating businesses, or entrepreneurs can choose to retain 100% ownership of their company and grow through their own revenue.
Discovered opportunity in the talent economy
Developed the idea for Flexible to pre-vet freelancers
Initially used Google Sheets and later built a full web app with Bubble.io
Achieved $3 million revenue, demonstrating the power of no-code tools
Lessons learned: focus on customer value, utilize no-code tools, and consider bootstrapping
Focus on Customer Value
Karthik's journey teaches entrepreneurs the importance of focusing on customer value rather than obsessing over product development. When starting a business, it's crucial to address a problem or fulfill a specific need for your target audience. By serving customers well and delivering value, you create a viable business, rather than just building a product. Here is a summary of focusing on customer value:
Solve problems or fulfill needs
Deliver value to customers
Create a viable business, not just a product
Power of No-Code Tools
Karthik successfully built a company using no-code tools, proving their effectiveness for non-technical founders. No-code platforms, such as Bubble.io, enable entrepreneurs to build and test their products without technical expertise, reducing bottlenecks and increasing flexibility. Here are some key points about the power of no-code tools:
Accessible for non-technical founders
Reduces bottlenecks and resource constraints
Increases flexibility and adaptability in product development
An important lesson from Karthik's experience is the value of bootstrapping a startup. By self-funding, entrepreneurs can maintain control over their business while using revenue to fuel growth. Bootstrapping isn't the only option, but it's important to consider, especially for those looking to maintain ownership over their company. Here's a brief summary of bootstrapping:
Maintain full control and ownership of your business
Use revenue to fuel growth
Ideal for entrepreneurs looking to avoid outside investment or maintain control over their company
By understanding these key lessons, aspiring entrepreneurs can learn from Karthik's experience and find success in their own ventures.
Karthik discovered his true passion in entrepreneurship after leaving a dissatisfying finance job and pursuing an MBA. Identifying a shift in the talent economy, where skilled individuals sought more flexibility in their careers, he realized the need for a platform that pre-vets freelancers and matches them with companies seeking their talents.
Initially, Karthik aimed to connect freelancers with companies and earn a commission, but he soon realized the potential for a scalable platform. After building a full-code platform that didn't generate demand, he turned to powerful no-code tools to create the first version of Flexible. Starting with Google Sheets before moving on to building a web app using Bubble.io, he scaled the platform until it generated $3 million in revenue.
Karthik's journey with Flexible highlights several key entrepreneurial lessons:
Focus on delivering customer value rather than simply creating a product. If the product doesn't solve a problem or provide a desired outcome, it won't generate revenue.
No-code tools empower non-technical individuals to achieve extraordinary results. This allows businesses to be more flexible, while reducing bottlenecks and concentrating on growth and revenue generation.
Bootstrapping a startup from the ground up is possible, and often advisable, regardless of whether funding comes from investors or generated revenue.
By leveraging no-code tools, Karthik Sridoran's story highlights the importance of focusing on customer value, adapting to market feedback, and harnessing the power of readily available tools to achieve remarkable success and revenue growth in a competitive market.