E149: CEO of FreshBooks on The New Economy and Starting His 400 Person Company in the Basement

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Mike is the co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks, the world’s #1 cloud accounting software for self-employed professionals. Built in 2003 after he accidentally saved over an invoice, Mike spent 3.5 years growing FreshBooks from his parents’ basement. Since then, over 10 million people have used FreshBooks to save time billing, and collect billions of dollars. 

Episode highlights:

  • How Mike sees COVID changing the world…with entrepreneurs, especially.
  • How things are changing with virtual agencies.
  • Why Mike decided to niche and what it’s done for the company.
  • Insight FreshBooks has from the numbers they’re seeing during the pandemic.
  • How Mike has built a great company culture, including setting up “blind dates”.
  • Mike’s take on leadership.
  • Best advice received: There’s a 4 letter word in business: focus.
  • Habit that contributes to success: Perseverance and head-down to finish things.
  • Recommended tools: Zoom and Slack
  • Recommended book: Bruce Springsteen’s biography
  • Run time: 38:56


Links:

Quotes:

  • “A lot of people think they need an office to get going.”
  • “There’s going to be a before and after with COVID.”
  • “By choosing not to serve everyone, we make different design decisions.”
  • “Hey, just make it easier for your clients to pay.”
  • “It’s less conducive to this kind of stuff.”
  • “This is a really important time to have your invoices straight.”

Takeaways:

  • Niching has lots of benefits!
  • Think about easier ways for your clients to pay you within the current environment. Think digital.
  • Stay in touch with your clients right now. It’s important for so many reasons, but it will also help you get paid what you’re owed.