How would you describe what you do at Popsa?
I’ve historically done all of the product design, web development and CRM communications for Popsa, on top of my CEO and my director duties. This is a legacy from when we were a small company of just a few people and now that there’s more than 20 of us I can’t continue doing these jobs.
My role will change over the coming year, stepping away from a lot of front line roles so that I can concentrate my efforts and focus on my responsibilities as CEO. I lead our investment rounds and company strategy, and we’re now growing so fast, the challenges of scaling need to be actively managed – our methods of working together as a team need to constantly evolve to keep up.
What does your typical working day look like?
Increasingly, my calendar is looking like Tetris.
As more people join the Popsa team, more communication and planning is needed and this is particularly true as I’m transferring years of knowledge from my design and development roles to my new colleagues. This means a lot of meetings, but I try to still do some hands-on work in the evenings, it helps keep me in touch with what we’re doing for our customers.
What's your favourite thing about Popsa?
Building a product together is intense, but the team we have at Popsa makes it so thrilling and rewarding too.
I remember releasing the latest version of the Popsa apps and platform late at night last October, the anticipation was electric with everyone genuinely caring about what our customers think. The work spanned many months and moved the customer experience and the company forward.
What is your proudest moment at Popsa?
My proudest moment so far was when I realised that we were going to surpass all our targets for the third year running.
Building a startup is very hard. As a founder you inevitably have to make promises to people. Companies are built on the hope that these promises come to fruition, and so there’s nothing better than seeing the result of everyone’s hard work actually paying off. This is true with investor’s too; I feel a lot of responsibility to deploy their money wisely and so it is extremely fulfilling to have achieved what was promised. Importantly, this gives everyone involved the confidence to push on, to continue investing their valuable time and efforts and to build solutions from scratch. Everyday we are pushing ourselves to come up with something from nothing.
What do you like to do outside of work?
Wait, is that a thing?
What’s your favourite food spot around the Popsa Soho office?
Golden Union. The best chips I’ve had in London in the 11 years I’ve lived here. Yum.
What is your favourite part of your job?
Hearing our customers speak about our product – how much it means to them, how they use it in unusual ways and how their photos bring joy to their lives.
It constantly reminds me of why I do this, and I very much believe that many Popsa books and prints will outlive me. Long after we’re all gone people will be finding one of our products in their attic or in a box somewhere and they'll relive those captured moments for themselves.
Something people don't know about you is…
I used to be an architect. I always wanted to be an architect, ever since I was little, but I went into technology pretty quickly after getting my qualifications. I couldn’t resist the ability to make change in the world. Interestingly, I’d say that tech is one of the few professions – other than architecture – that can makes such a dramatic difference to the way people live their lives.