READY, SET, DOWNLOAD.
Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.Theodore Roosevelt
Development of the Lawn Buddy apps started in July 2016. Nine months later, I am happy to announce to the Startup Diaries audience that the app is available for download today on both iOS and Android.
This process has been long and difficult, so I've asked some of my team to provide a short entry on some of their favorite moments from these past nine months as we took this system from development to market.
At GroundWork, I sat between Steven and Phil, giving me the ability to overhear some of the development process and the decision-making that went into creating this app. I was encouraged to see their extreme focus on prioritizing the user experience — from the perspectives of both the "lawntrepreneurs" and homeowners.
Initially, it blew my mind on how many decisions needed to be made when creating a platform like this. But in every decision, priority number one was to create actual value for customers while making financial sense.
When I got the offer to join the Lawn Buddy crew, I couldn't resist. It has been a blast ever since, and I'm pumped to see what we can do this year.
Steven initially approached me as a contractor, asking me for a bid to build out the Lawn Buddy platform. After just a few conversations, we realized that Lawn Buddy needed a technical founder in order for it to be successful in the long term. Luckily, we saw eye to eye on this, and Steven offered me that role.
It's been a blur since those early conversations, but looking back, we've accomplished a lot together. We created four separate apps, two public-facing websites and a business management platform — all in only nine months.
It has been a lot of work, but we've learned an awful lot through this process. While it's really exciting to reflect on where we've been, it's even more exciting to look at where we're going next.
After years of experience as an engineer in the corporate environment, I've found the startup experience to be unique. Limited resources coupled with a plethora of tasks that need to be accomplished require accelerated learning and executing under pressure.
After the idea was born, many weekend hours were devoted to rapidly learning about our industry, customers, opportunities, services and competition. Unlike a large corporation, we do not have many tried-and-tested methods. Thus, we can't be afraid to try new ideas, learn from our mistakes and adapt.
I feel blessed to be a part of an incredible team of hardworking and passionate entrepreneurs. Working with my husband, Steven, has been the biggest blessing throughout this experience. It has been amazing to watch his confidence and leadership skills grow as he leads Lawn Buddy to success.
I have truly loved growing this company with this team. I have enjoyed the process of developing the idea with Sonya, building the technology with Phil, and now marketing the value to our customers with Toby.
I have also truly enjoyed working with the lawn care providers or "lawntrepreneurs." I thought many of them would be hesitant to even talk to us, let alone hear us out to see the value we provided. I was wrong. Instead, we get requests from providers all across the United States, and I have truly enjoyed learning about each of these businesses.
We started out with Chad and Bill, two rockstar lawn care providers who really helped us mold the app and its functionality. Now we are able to deliver that value to people near and far. This has truly been an amazing journey, and I can't wait to see what the future holds for Lawn Buddy and our team.
We could not have achieved any of this without the support and guidance from our community and mentors. We are proud to grow our company right here in Wichita. Thank you, Wichita. Now go download the app!