Does this sound familiar?
You're in a tough spot
You don't have a technical cofounder, but you need to make critical technical (or technical hire) decisions. Your budget can't handle having an expensive full time CTO yet and even if it could, you wouldn't know who to hire! But you have to take these steps now or miss out.
Or maybe you are the technical cofounder with an excellent solution to developing your product. However, your experience is not enough to give you a solid idea of upcoming obstacles. You also want to make the right choices to continue to build your product and company while maintaining the ability to change things quickly to reach product market fit.
Or you haven't built a software development team before. You need to hire the right people, which can be really hard in itself, and you need to establish super lean and mean work processes. Do you use Agile/Scrum or Kanban? How do you get just the right amount of communication between design and development? What's the deal with Continuous Integration? You want to cut out needless bureacracy while still staying on top of how things are going and getting shit done!
Thankfully Generali.st can help you out.
Generali.st offers pre-defined work packages that allows us to concentrate on meeting your goals while you get predictable costs.
Hi, I'm Walter McGinnis. I'm a somewhat quirky american currently living in Wellington, New Zealand.
My professional philosophy is "be the person you would want to work with." I value strong communication skills, quality effort that has a pragmatic approach over rote dogma, a sense of humor and fun, as well as respect for others. I always try to bring these qualities to whatever I work on.
I've been working on software as a developer and technical advisor, mostly web, for well over a decade and a half at this point. I started my first website in 1997 after returning from working in Antarctica. I wanted to share my photos. That snowballed into my first software job with ArsDigita based on the open source toolkit called the ArsDigita Community System.
In 2006, I started work on Kete, an open source Ruby on Rails web app, whose fundamental purpose was to enable anyone to collaborate on content on the web. A sort of better wiki. Although Kete didn't take over the world, it did have a solid following with libraries here in NZ. I was also the Technical Lead, responsible for setting the direction of development in collaboration with its community of users and developers. A big part of my job was hiring a great team to work on the project.
In the last several years I've worked with startups in Vermont, Barcelona (well kinda London, Florence, Mexico City, too), New York, Australia, and New Zealand. I'm particularly attuned to building and optimizing teams that work remotely.
I ramble on in even more detail about myself here.
How does it work?
Generali.st has two packages:
- On Demand Tech Advising
- Advising + CTO Actions
On Demand Tech Advising is a straight forward consulting session taking place over video conferencing. We'll cover your tech next steps. The idea is to save you time and money by pointing you in the right direction. You'll get a written summary of the advice and suggested resources you need for your situation.
You can schedule these as you need them so that you can keep moving forward without spinning your wheels trying to figure out the technical details on your own.
Advising + CTO Actions is more full featured, but still a stripped down package.
Every month we'll have two consulting sessions. We'll review your activity since the last session, follow up on previous goals, and set new targets for the upcoming period. As with On Demand Tech Advising, we'll provide you with written reports packed with shortcuts to the finding the right resources you need and actionable advice.
During the month, Generali.st will also work on deliverables that match your goals for what stage your company is at.
Typical things Generali.st might work on with you:
- Determine features necessary to deliver minimum viable product (MVP).
- Figure out the software stack. Does it include an API layer? Do we need standalone mobile apps? Can we lean on third party services? Can we integrate them in such a way that they can be replaced with in house solutions as we grow?
- Set up coding environment and effective ways for the team to communicate and share knowledge. Take advantage of both for establishing company culture and marketing.
- Hiring or contracting front end, back end, or full stack software developers as needed - we're particularly good at finding excellent remote candidates. Successful digital nomads are by definition adaptable and innovative.
- Put in place core metrics - are we losing users during sign up? Once users are onboard, do they get the core value of the product?
- Collaborating on the technical solution for a particularly tricky feature.
- Hiring a full time CTO to replace Generali.st when the company is growing by leaps and bounds!
How many hours of consulting work is that?
General turnaround will be three to four days. But I intentionally avoid any precise numbers here. This is a value-based service, and you should worry more about setting and accomplishing the right goals.
However, Generali.st does impose a limit to the amount of deliverable work included per month — it should fit into two days. This should be plenty for most of our goals. If the task won't make the limit — which I imagine might happen eventually — there are two ways out: postpone this task until the next month, or book an extra day of work immediately (at our normal daily rate, depending on availability).
How do I get started?
You can find pricing information here:
Or for the impatient... See that little chat icon to the right? That's a direct line to me!
If I'm online, you can chat with me right away. If not, I'll be sent an email and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. Either way, ask any questions you may have and I'll be happy to answer them. That will get the ball rolling!