S5E10 The rise of the non-technical entrepreneur with Colin Hirdman

S5E10 – The rise of the non-technical entrepreneur with Colin Hirdman

The rise of the non-technical entrepreneur with Colin Hirdman.

In today’s fast-paced entrepreneurial landscape, the traditional notion of needing a technical co-founder to build a product is being challenged like never before. With the rise of no code and low code options, non-technical entrepreneurs are finding innovative ways to bring their ideas to life swiftly and with minimal risk. Colin Herdman, a seasoned entrepreneur, sheds light on the transformative power of these tools in his recent podcast appearance. He emphasizes how leveraging these technologies can help entrepreneurs find product-market fit faster and optimize their chances of success.

One key takeaway from Colin’s insights is the increasing accessibility and ease of building software products. As the barriers to entry continue to diminish, entrepreneurs are presented with a unique opportunity to leverage technology to scale their businesses and drive growth. By embracing low code and no code tools, entrepreneurs can streamline their development process, minimize costs, and focus on delivering value to their customers. The democratization of software creation is empowering a new wave of innovators to turn their visions into reality.

Transition to Current Focus

Sean transitions the conversation to Colin’s current ventures, particularly focusing on his involvement with Monkey Island Ventures, Agurian, and Cloudburst. Colin explains the evolution of his roles, shifting to focus solely on Cloudburst, a software development company catering to entrepreneurs.

The  New Book: The Rise of the Non-Technical Entrepreneur

Colin reveals details about his upcoming publication, “The Rise of the Non-Technical Entrepreneur,” emphasizing the growing accessibility and opportunity for non-technical individuals to build software solutions. He highlights the convergence of low-code/no-code tools, AI, and global talent as key enablers for non-technical entrepreneurs.

Structured Approach of Scaling a Company

Colin outlines a structured approach for non-technical entrepreneurs to scale their businesses through software. He introduces five key stages, starting with having a clear product vision, developing an MVP, leveraging the product as a sales differentiator, adding value to the business, and finally, expanding into SaaS offerings for broader market impact.

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The Importance of MVP Development

The discussion delves into the significance of building a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for non-technical founders. Colin stresses the importance of focusing on solving specific pain points with a lightweight product to gain traction, emphasizing the iterative process of feedback and refinement.

How to Utilize Low-Code/No-Code Tools

Colin emphasizes the value of low-code/no-code tools for non-technical entrepreneurs, citing platforms like Adalo, Bubble, Airtable, and Webflow as viable options. These tools enable rapid prototyping and testing of ideas, empowering entrepreneurs to validate concepts before investing heavily in development.

Insights on Quality Assurance

The conversation shifts to quality assurance in software development, highlighting the importance of rigorous testing to ensure product reliability. Colin underscores the role of dedicated QA teams and automated testing tools in maintaining high-quality standards throughout the development process.

The concept of Shared Success Model

Colin introduces Shared Success Agreements as a progressive alternative to conventional equity, debt, and funding avenues, fostering collaboration among entrepreneurs, talent, and funders. This innovative model provides a flexible and equitable framework, opening new avenues for partnerships. By embracing such progressive models, entrepreneurs can engage with skilled professionals and secure funding, paving the way for a more inclusive and dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Inspirational Advice

Reflecting on his entrepreneurial journey, Colin shares inspirational advice he received to ignore naysayers and pursue one’s vision despite doubts. This empowering message encourages entrepreneurs to trust in their ideas and persevere in the face of skepticism.

Key Timecodes

  • (00:48) – Show intro and background history
  • (02:42) – Understanding his business strategies
  • (03:19) – A bit about his book
  • (05:05) – Deeper into his business tactics
  • (14:10) – How his business model works
  • (19:57) – Deeper into his Quality Control philosophy
  • (23:02) – What are his growth and marketing strategies
  • (29:21) – A key takeaway from the guest
  • (33:40) – Guest contacts


[00:00:00.000] – Show Intro

Introducing Payback Time, the podcast for entrepreneurs looking to build and scale their startups, gain access to actionable tips, proven strategies, and valuable data that can help you avoid mistakes, skyrocket sales, and optimize profits. Your business breakthrough may just be an episode away.


[00:00:18.020] – Guest intro

If you’re a non-technical entrepreneur and you’re looking to create a product, you’ve probably been told you need to find a technical co founder. Well, that would be an untrue statement, especially today when there’s so many no code and low code options available. My next guest has a business that helps entrepreneurs, especially non-technical entrepreneurs, find product market fit as fast as possible with the least amount of risk. If you’re looking to start a business or grow your business in the early stages, You’re going to love this episode. Please welcome Colin Herdman.


[00:00:48.450] – Sean

Colin, welcome back to the show.


[00:00:50.290] – Colin

Thanks, Sean. I’m really happy to be here. I had a lot of fun the last time, so looking forward to this.


[00:00:54.270] – Sean

Absolutely. So before we dive into what you’re working on now, could you tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know?


[00:01:01.760] – Colin

Sure. I’ve never created a resume. So I started my first company a week after I graduated from college, and I’ve been an entrepreneur ever since, so I’ve never created a resume.


[00:01:14.060] – Sean

I love that. We’re not going to worry about that piece of paper. We’re going to drive forward and do our own thing. I love it.


[00:01:19.860] – Colin

Just going to make it up as we go. Yeah.


[00:01:22.430] – Sean

Yeah, right. My man, I like it. All right, so let’s dive into what you’re working on now. But before we do that, why don’t you give us a little recap top of your background to bring us to the present?


[00:01:32.950] – Colin

Yeah, no, it sounds good. So like I said, I started my first company, Wicke, after I graduated from college when I was 22 years old. I graduated a criminal justice degree, and I never used it. And just jumped in Never took a business class, accounting class, marketing class, and just made it all up as I went and had the luck of just meeting a lot of wonderful people, wonderful employees, wonderful partners, and have just grown various businesses over the years. That first business I sold in 2006. 2007, I started Monkey Island Ventures with Josh and Zack, who are two buddies of mine. We’ve all known each other since we were about five years old. And Monkey Island is the name of a park that we played at when we were kids. And under that Monkey Island umbrella, we’ve launched a number of SaaS products for ourselves. We launched Agurian, our digital marketing company here in Minneapolis, and then Cloudburst, our software development company. So Those are the service-based companies we have, and we continue to also build product for ourselves. We have a real passion there as well. But that’s in short, what I have going on.


[00:02:42.140] – Sean

Sure. Appreciate that backstory now here. Something we’re talking about offline is, Agerian and Cloudburst, the two companies you’re leading or in a leadership role in both, you have since transitioned to focused only on Cloudburst, correct?


[00:02:58.180] – Colin

Right. So I was the President of the Gurian. I left that a little over two years ago. One of my other business partners stepped into that role, which has worked out phenomenally well. And so then, Zack and I are in Cloudburst full-time under providing software development for entrepreneurs.


[00:03:18.320] – Sean

Right on. All right. And you got a book coming out or some publication titled The Rise of the Non-Technical founder. Let’s talk about that.


[00:03:27.130] – Colin

Yeah. So it’s The Rise of the Non-Technical Entreprene. And really, the focus on that was what we were seeing happening in the market, where we see this combination of low code/no code tools getting easier and easier to utilize to build product AI, obviously. And then that third is global talent. So you’re able to keep your costs down and hire really talented people from around the world to help you build your product. And so what we’re finding is that more and more non-technical entrepreneurs, there’s really never been a better time to build software. We always say there’s also never been a more difficult time to overbuild your product. So that’s a big issue that we’ve seen with a lot of the entrepreneurs we work with. They have these big visions. They want to build product, but they don’t really know how to focus really on that MVP version of what they want to build. So we They put together this guy that really, for non-tech entrepreneurs, helps lay out for them the unique opportunity that’s available to them. And we think as it gets easier and easier to build software, that more and more businesses are going to bring that in to as a core competency, not necessarily building software, but building software that is addressing specific pains within their company.


[00:04:54.980] – Colin

And it just opens up a whole new area of opportunity to improve that business and scale that business and generate wealth, really, for the entrepreneur.


[00:05:05.330] – Sean

Right on. Now, I know there’s a lot of entrepreneurs out there. In fact, I was talking to one yesterday, a guy who has a vision on a product, and he is not technical. He’s got some project management experience, some product ownership experience, some other management-type experience at larger companies, but he does not know how to code, and he feels like he’s stuck in the water. And people have told him, Well, you need to find a technical co founder. And my response to that was, No, you don’t. You need to find some talent that can get you from A to B as fast as possible. In my example, I’ve worked with a lot of teams from overseas. I’ve got a great team right now at Tykr that’s from India and other people. That’s the engineering side. I’ve got a great team that, for example, I’ve got a media team that’s located in Kenya, Brazil, Bangladesh, and India. And then I’ve got a UIUX guy out of Poland. But anyway, let’s dive into what are some of the options a non-technical founder has if they want to move forward and build an MVP?


[00:06:13.050] – Colin

Yeah. So with Cloudburst, we really see ourselves as this guide or mentor. So what you’re talking about is, as that entrepreneur, when you’re looking to hire overseas talent, the one caveat to that is being able to understand understand when they’re talking tech stacks or when they are making certain kinds of recommendations or when they’re saying how long things might take to do. If you don’t have experience or expertise in that, it’s really hard to hold them accountable. And I think that’s one of the things that entrepreneurs really need to make sure that they have is someone that’s a mentor or guide to have their best interest at heart when they’re working with overseas talent. And certainly, if you’re able to find Find a team that’s able to work with you and have that level of trust and transparency, then you’re in a great spot. But a lot of times, it’s hard to come by, and you may need to go through some pain before you find that right fit for a team. But one of the things that we’re finding is with nontech entrepreneurs and starting to execute on their idea, low code/no code tools are great.


[00:07:28.950] – Colin

They don’t always get you as far as you might want to go. So that’s the big caveat there is that you might get 70, 80 % of the way there, but now you’re bumped up against the limits of what those products can do, which means you might need to cobble some products together, or you actually might need to hire some development talent to close that gap and help you get that MVP launched. But there’s definitely ways of being able to work around that and make it work. So for us, it really is that combination of understanding what your vision is, and that gets to, for us, a lot of the entrepreneurs that we’ve seen the most success with is they already have an existing business, and they understand business, they understand their industry. They see pain points that they think they could alleviate with software within their company, and they want to build a lightweight product to start getting some traction, which is really a wonderful way of thinking about building software. So we’ve come up with the entrepreneurs that want to grow and want to scale with software, which we think the future, more and more entrepreneurs are going to want to do this, is these five stages of scaling a company through software.


[00:08:40.110] – Colin

So stage one is having a vision for your product. The entrepreneur needs to have a vision for what it is that they want to build. Then stage two is getting that MVP built. So again, having blinders on, being very focused on what’s this pain that I want to solve and what’s this initial product that I can build, get it in the hands of my internal team and/or customers, and start getting those feedback loops. If you actually start to have a product that’s gaining traction within your internal team and customers, then stage three is using that product as a differentiator in your sales process, where you can go out into the market and you can say, We provide these products and services, but we also have the software product that differentiates us from all of our competitors and has these benefits. Within that stage three, if you’re able to start to scale your company, if you can start to prove that you’re closing business, that you’re generating sales because of the unique software that you now have, that really starts bringing you into stage four, which is adding a multiple to the value of your business.


[00:09:50.540] – Colin

So if you’re able to show that your business is scaling because of the software product and it’s providing this unique experience to your internal team and your customers, and people are buying from you And because you have this product, it’s part of that experience, investors and/or potential acquirers of your business are going to see a lot of value in that and seeing that as a big differentiator. So for a lot of entrepreneurs, when they’re getting into stage four and they’ve added a multiple to the value of their business, may just want to stop there and not go into stage five. But stage five is really looking at your product that you built and realize realizing that other companies within your industry could benefit from this product and releasing that out as a SaaS product, Software as a service, where other companies within your industry can now start using this software. And now your business is starting to scale as product and is scaling through technology and isn’t just scaling now with people. And that generates a whole new level of opportunity for you and wealth and and all the things that come with, as you know, Sean, having a successful SaaS product.


[00:11:04.460] – Colin

It’s a wonderful business model. So we’re hearing more and more stories, and we’ve worked with more and more entrepreneurs that are following these five stages into scaling their company and generating more wealth for themselves and for their employees. So it’s really a wonderful thing to see. And it’s really all due to more and more entrepreneurs having the availability to build software and actually execute on their ideas.


[00:11:34.850] – Sean

So just to recap the five, and then I want to dive into them a little bit. You’ve got vision, you’ve got MVP, you’ve got use the product in the sales process, Yes. Number four, add a multiple to the value of the business. And then number five is create the SaaS. So if number five is creating the SaaS, does that imply that one through four, actually two through four, you’re actually using the MVP with a low code version?


[00:12:02.420] – Colin

Not necessarily. It doesn’t have to be low code. It’s very possible that the low code version might blend stage 2 and stage 3, but you might find that the polish that you need and to actually start scaling your company and the features that are getting requested by internal team or customers really requires you to build out a version that isn’t low code, no code, that is a fully fledged, custom-built product. But by that time, you’ve already proven the product to a level where you’ve really derisked that avenue or that approach for building a custom product.


[00:12:39.640] – Sean

Got you. And before, I’ve got a question here. We’re going to brainstorm a strategy scenario here in a second, but can you give us some of the low-code/no-code tools you recommend?


[00:12:50.960] – Colin

Yeah. So there are so many. I mean, there’s literally thousands of these tools out there now. You go back as early as the early 2000s and think about WordPress, right? You can almost deem that as a low-code/no-code web development tool. But nowadays, there’s Adalo and there’s Bubble. There’s certain products that fit certain niches, like Airtable, Webflow. So there’s a lot of different products out there. So I think more than anything, it gets back to the idea, what is it that you as the entrepreneur have the vision for and want to build? And then it’s finding the right makeup of products that could actually get that first version built so you can begin to test that model.


[00:13:32.780] – Sean

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[00:14:49.540] – Sean

You’ve got B2C, which is a large volume of consumers. That’s what Tykr is, or Duolingo is another good example. Then you’ve got B2B, that SMB, small and mid-size business. A good example there would be Mailchimp. And then the third tier would be enterprise. That’s really complex software. So I look at that middle tier, and these people are coming up with a prototype in Figma, then selling the service, but they’re not having the software do the work. They are doing the work manually to figure out, okay, where does the customer need help most? What could we turn into a software? Because you probably see it all the time, too many people trying to create all this software tech, and it’s all tech debt. It’s like the majority of it really doesn’t provide value. So it’s like this path of provide the service. Yes, it’s trade your time for a paycheck, but you use the Figma prototype, and then you know out of like 100 things you could code, you really only need to code three to have a really laser-focused monetized product.


[00:15:54.410] – Colin

Yeah. I mean, that approach is ideal. We use Figma. We use that mainly We’re really in the UI UX design phase where we’re trying to create a clickable prototype. Again, there’s no code behind it. The nice thing is you can take stuff out of Figma and bring it into the development cycle and have that overlaid into the code and get that up and running. So there’s still a lot of value in building in that phase. But that’s certainly one of the really great ways of starting to test your idea through a clickable prototype and getting in the hands of the people that you want to start getting some feedback on and do that in a a lightweight way where it’s not taking a lot of time or money to get some of those initial versions built out and start getting some of what’s up in the entrepreneur’s head out into a usable prototype. So that makes a ton of sense. And there’s more and more building those early stage prototypes. It’s just going to continue to get easier and easier as more and more products are really taking in machine learning and AI and just trying to make that process easier for non-technical entrepreneurs to be able to start building product.


[00:17:06.890] – Sean

Right on. Now, with the journey there in the beginning, there’s a lot of entrepreneurs I talk to, they don’t really have a budget. So with some of these low-code/no-code options, do they have a freemium plan, something you can use for a while, or maybe a pretty low-priced tier for getting up and running?


[00:17:25.970] – Colin

No, it’s a great mix where they’ll have a trial period, and then you have to start paying, or they have a freemium version that you can just continue to use. But if you want to add in certain features or hit certain limits, you have to start paying. So it really just depends on the product. But yeah, a lot of options out there.


[00:17:42.390] – Sean

And then this leads up to your service with Logburst. You guys can actually help with the coding. Now, do you have people just in the States, or do you have teams that are offshores as well?


[00:17:54.920] – Colin

Yeah. So that’s one of the things that… So Zack, Josh, we’ve built over a dozen SaaS products ourselves with varying levels of success. We love the SaaS model. We think it’s just phenomenal. But one of the things that we realized with building SaaS was, or building software, any software, it can be quite expensive. And we really wanted to build Cloudburst to be the software development company company that we wish we always had when we were building as non-technical entrepreneurs. And so you have that proverbial three legs of the stool, right? Quality, cost, and speed. And normally, you get two out of the three. Well, nowadays, you really should be pushing for all three. You should be able to get high quality code. You should be able to get high speed in development, and you should be able to get it for a lower cost. And so, yes, our model is very much playing that mentor guide role, where we’re coming in, helping the entrepreneur understand their vision. And then from that, we utilize a mix of our local dev talent as well as international talent to build their product in a cost-effective way. So they’re getting quality, they’re getting great speed, and they’re getting low cost for building out their products.


[00:19:18.700] – Colin

And so I think more and more, if you want to go alone through Upwork and Fiverr and these things, certainly you can go out and try and find talent yourself. But again, How do you hold the development team accountable? How do you know what tech stacks to use? How do you know how long things should take? And there can also be some cultural things, too, between teams and whatnot, too. But, yeah, in this day and age, I would really push every entrepreneur to really think about getting all three legs of that stool and really going after their vision because I think you can do it.


[00:19:57.130] – Sean

I love that expectation. Something I want to drill into a little bit would be quality control. There’s a lot of entrepreneurs, especially, I should say, a lot of engineers around the world that they don’t like testing their own work. And what can happen is a lot of back and forth bug fixing and frustrating meetings and slow development. How do you guys improve that part of the process? Do you have a QA team or somebody who’s strictly focused on that?


[00:20:31.520] – Colin

Yes. And there’s plenty of people out there. That is their specialty in doing quality assurance testing. And it’s really, really important because you as the entrepreneur, you could go in and be charged with doing the testing yourself, but you don’t always know what types of things to look for. There’s tools out there that can also do some automated testing where it’s testing against certain types of tech, whether it’s certain types of browsers or certain types of computer configurations and things like that, where it’s testing the code against that. So it’s really important to do that QA testing. And there’s plenty of people out there that are experienced, and that’s their specialty. But most dev shops, that will be part of the expectation and the experiences that testing will be done, it will be done in a very specific way, and then it gets released in a way that allows the entrepreneur and other people to test before it goes live. Sure.


[00:21:36.420] – Sean

I still recommend, especially to the listeners out there, if you’re thinking about hiring a team to build the tech, I still say You are the product owner. You need to be testing. You need to be experiencing that software on dev before it’s pushed. Because there are people, I tell you what, and I’ve been building software for, gosh, close to 20 years, that they’ll I’ll say, Yeah, it’s part of our testing process. And then you get right to the last minute, and it’s about to push from dev to production, and it’s riddled with simple tests. I’m like, Walk me through your testing process. Who was testing this? You know And then it’s the blame game situation. No, you as a product owner have to own that.


[00:22:19.820] – Colin

Yeah. No, it is vitally important that the entrepreneur is doing testing as well. I mean, it’s your vision. You’re the one that is really the driving force behind it. So yes, I think in a lot of ways, the entrepreneur needs to be the product owner. The entrepreneur needs to understand the vision. They need to understand you’re creating a brand. All of those things that go into creating success successful company needs to be addressed and managed by the entrepreneur at a high level. And then certainly people have their areas of expertise where they’re filling in the gaps and providing some support. But I agree. I I think the entrepreneur needs to be really a part of that process.


[00:23:03.200] – Sean

Now, with your business, you have a component called Shared Success. Can you talk about that a little bit?


[00:23:08.640] – Colin

Yeah. So we had developed a couple of Twitter products back in 2012, 2013. And the first one, it took us a month to build it. It was called Local tweets, and it localized Twitter users around zip codes. And someone would log in to our product using their Twitter Twitter account. And then when they submitted their zip code, it would associate them with a city and a state as well. And then it would send a tweet out through their account saying that they signed up at local tweets at this zip code and then gave a link so other people could do it. We got this viral loop and we signed up like 30,000 users in two days. And we were trending topic on Twitter. It was really fun, but we didn’t make any money at it. So we ended up creating a product called SMB tweet, which would use an algorithm and it would grow a Twitter audience for local retail, like a coffee shop. They want Twitter followers that I actually walk in and buy a coffee. And so we created a product that would create local followers for these small business accounts. And the developer that we ended up working with, he said, Look, guys, I know you’re in bootstrap mode.


[00:24:17.470] – Colin

He said, my normal rate is $100 an hour. He said, but I’ll charge you $50 an hour and build your MVP. But once that MVP is live and you start to generate revenue, I want 10 % of your revenue to go back to me and pay me out at $150 an hour on every hour I put in for the project. And we said, okay, that sounds good. So he got paid $50 an hour and he got to build the MVP. Once we started generating revenue, he got paid out $150 an hour. So he got an additional income stream coming in, and he didn’t have to put in any more work, and he got fully paid out. We got our MVP built, and we didn’t have to give up any equity. And so it was really a win-win for both sides. And so when we created Cloudburst a number of years later, we brought shared success in as an option for some of the entrepreneurs that we were partnering with. And so if both sides wanted to participate through Shared Success Agreement, then we would execute it. And really, Shared Success is just a wonderful alternative to equity, debt, or crowdfunding.


[00:25:21.440] – Colin

It’s super simple. There’s no valuations, there’s no cap table, it’s not debt. And it just really allows both sides sides to go into this partnership and really both sides expecting the best, knowing that the worst could still happen, but expecting the best and really going in true partnership with one another through a Shared Success Agreement. So we created a site called SharedSuccessAgrement. Org. We don’t make any money on these. It’s just something that we feel like more entrepreneurs talent, talent being the service provider, should consider. And so So at sharedsuccessagreement. Org, there’s a calculator there, and you can play around with what’s the value of the project, what percentage of that is shared success, and what percentage of that is your full rate, what’s the multiple on what you’re giving up for shared success. So if $10,000 is shared success and you have a multiple of three, then you’re expecting to get paid $30,000 out over a period of time. Yeah, and then you’re putting in what percentage of revenue you’re expecting to get from the company each month and then over what period of time. So you can play around. I think there’s five fields in there.


[00:26:37.370] – Colin

And you can play around and then it’s giving you on the right-hand side, it’s just telling you how the numbers are equating out in total value. And at the end, you can see what your return on investment would be. And then if you submit the form that’s attached to that calculator, it will actually send you a word document with all the legalese, and you You can edit it to have a final version. Certainly, you need to look at it and potentially even have your lawyer look at it. But it’s a really lightweight document. It’s really easy to use. And for a founder, entrepreneur, besides partnering up with someone that might be discounting their services for a share of future revenue, you can also bring in money through a shared success agreement. So you can have funders give you money through a shared success agreement, and they don’t have to be an accredited investor. So it’s working under the crowdfunding equity laws. So anyway, there’s a lot of value there. And again, we don’t make any money on it. We just think it’s a wonderful way for entrepreneurs and talent and funders to come together and hopefully contribute to building amazing companies.


[00:27:47.300] – Sean

Real quick here, what is the URL again?


[00:27:49.490] – Colin

It’s sharedsuccessagreement. Org.


[00:27:53.110] – Sean

Got it. I was missing the agreements part of that.


[00:27:56.290] – Colin

Okay. Yeah, sharedsuccessagreement. Org. You got it. Cool. To speak to the audience here, I do like this option that Colin is talking about.


[00:28:07.470] – Sean

The reason is there are a lot of places you can go to try to find talent, but if you find an engineer, somebody who doesn’t do QA, you got yourself a problem. If you find somebody who’s more focused on project management and not the best coder, then you got yourself a problem. So it’s hard to find talent. There’s a lot of talent, but the right talent or good talent is hard. If you can find a team like Colin’s, then you can something like this shared success model, it’s a great way to keep your budget a little lower and get a great product and an enjoyable process along the way, because we’ve all had those headaches of building software, and you get the wrong team. For example, I’ve built a lot of software through the years, and even with my experience, I actually went through two different teams before landing on my third team here at Tykr. The first two could not… Said they could build a SaaS, they were not. It It was out of their league, you could say.


[00:29:03.090] – Colin

Yeah. No, I totally agree. So yeah, it’s definitely building anything is trial by fire. But yeah, if you’re surrounded by good people and there’s trust and everybody’s putting their best effort forward. Yeah, amazing things can come out of that. Right on.


[00:29:22.620] – Sean

All right. Before we jump to the rapid fire round, what is one good key takeaway you can give our audience?


[00:29:28.650] – Colin

I would say No, this is probably coming more from an inspirational point of view, but for any entrepreneurs out there, I would say, really consider how software could play a role in the improvement and scaling of your company. It’s just getting so much easier to build product. And I can guarantee that some of your competitors are probably thinking about it, and some may even be acting on it right now. So I I would just say, really think about that just as how every company has a website nowadays. In the coming years, it’s going to be that easy to have discrete software products that businesses are using to really address acute pain within their company, potentially even within their industry.


[00:30:18.970] – Sean

You asked a really important question there. What if my competition is already moving forward with a low code/no code option? If that doesn’t light a fire, I don’t know what does.


[00:30:30.280] – Colin

Yeah, right. Yeah, right. Yeah, exactly.


[00:30:33.400] – Sean

Cool. All right, let’s transition to the rapid fire round. This is the part of the episode where we get to find out who Colin really is. If you can try to answer each question in about 15 seconds or less. You ready?


[00:30:45.210] – Colin

I’m ready.


[00:30:46.150] – Sean

All right. So what is your favorite podcast?


[00:30:48.340] – Colin

I would say my favorite podcast is probably… Right now, it’s the Wolf of All Streets. So I’ve really gotten into blockchain, and I just love I’m on the Minnesota Blockchain Initiative, a nonprofit here in Minnesota. I’m on the board, and I just love that industry. But that’s probably my favorite podcast right now.


[00:31:09.550] – Sean

All right. And what’s a recent book you read and would recommend?


[00:31:14.950] – Colin

I have reread this book, Atlas Shrugged. And I think for me, that just really opened up my eyes to not only the value of entrepreneurship and creating, but also the layer of society and politics and government. I just always found that to be a very inspirational book. So it’s not the shortest read, but incredibly impactful.


[00:31:45.130] – Sean

Awesome. All right. Let me rephrase that again. What is your favorite movie?


[00:31:50.870] – Colin

My favorite movie? Can I give you a trilogy? Please. Probably Lord of the Rings. It used to be Star Wars, but I would say Lord of the Rings. My boys I love those movies. So they just completely take you out of reality. And again, I think part of it with Lord of the Rings is that difficult journey that they go through and persever. There’s just something to that, just that hero journey.


[00:32:12.400] – Sean

Great books and great movies for sure. Yeah.


[00:32:15.230] – Colin



[00:32:16.040] – Sean

All right. What is the worst advice you ever received?


[00:32:20.260] – Colin

Don’t try that. I think the only thing that has really propelled the human species forward is taking risk. I One of my axioms is everyone all the time is making up everything. It’s a wonderful thing. It’s this just stew that we’re all participating in.


[00:32:41.500] – Sean

Right. Flip that equation. What’s the best advice you ever received?


[00:32:45.830] – Colin

I was at an event, and Guy Kawasaki was talking, and he says, Don’t listen to the bozos. And those are the people that are telling you not to do it. Those are the people that are saying your idea won’t work or that you’re not good enough. And that’s not true. And so don’t listen to the bozos. Go for it.


[00:33:04.470] – Sean

I like it. Last question. Here’s a time machine question. If you could go back in time to give your younger self advice, what age would he visit and what would you say?


[00:33:12.880] – Colin

I would probably go back to 2010 and tell myself to buy as much Bitcoin as I possibly could. So, yeah, I got introduced to Bitcoin in 2014, and it was in one ear and out the other, and we were working on a smart water meter that we built. And I should have just stopped then and there and really looked at Bitcoin and blockchain.


[00:33:37.940] – Sean

In Bitcoin, right on. All right. And where can the audience reach you?


[00:33:43.140] – Colin

Yeah, you can reach me. Linkedin Colin Herdman. And if you want to see what we’re working on, monkeyislandventures. Com, again, is the holding company. And you can see all the fun things we’re working on, shared successes in there as well as our companies. And yeah, would I love to assist anyone wherever they’re at on their entrepreneurial journey. So feel free to reach out to me. We’d love to chat. Awesome.


[00:34:08.030] – Sean

Well, thank you so much for your time, Colin. This is great.


[00:34:10.670] – Colin

Thanks, Sean. Appreciate it.


[00:34:12.120] – Sean

All right. We’ll see you. Bye. Hey, I’d like to say thanks for checking out this podcast. I know there’s a lot of other podcasts you could be listening to, so thanks for spending some time with me. And if you have a moment, could you please head over to Apple Podcasts and leave a five-star review. The more reviews we get, the higher this podcast will rank. All tuned for the next episode. We’ll see you.