The 2015 edition of the pan-European startup contest Idea Challenge sees an increase in variety and internationality. The series of events re…
Florian [3rd left] with his cofounders Christian, Alfred and Rene
Photo credit: Runtastic
To fail as manager and simply working too much. As a CEO no one gives you feedback and if so it's hard to tell if the feedback is honest. That's a real problem in my opinion. I am even thinking about writing a book about it one day. And, as we are a fast growing company, the working hours seem to become more and more, so the logical next steps are to delegate tasks to other team members. I am fine with that on a professional level, but it’s a challenge on a personal level.
For the feedback, I actively ask my team to give me feedback, which might not be easy for them at times, because I always have an explanation why I did it my way (laughs). I also have a mentor I talk to on a regular basis and I have an agreement with my assistant, Eva, to tell me straight away. She is doing a brilliant job!
For the working hours, Eva helps as well. We already managed to cut my working week down from 80 hours to about 60 hours, but I still need to reduce the hours a bit more. After all, we didn’t found the company and commit to not having a life anymore. On a personal level, these are the two things I really want work on this year.
Founded in 2009, Runtastic has rapidly grown into an innovative suite of apps, products and services that track and manage health and fitness data
That was on a personal level as well... When one of our co-founders became seriously ill and his future was uncertain. Thankfully, after only a few months, we received the good news of his full recovery and things got back to normal. But times like these remind you very quickly what really counts...
I don’t think we ever had to face major difficulties – or maybe we just didn’t see them as that. There was one more difficult time when we went from 60 to 90 employees in a very short time without having the structure to provide them with the jobs we hired them for. But, we also learned from that. We are still working on ten projects at the same time, and that's one of the reason why we are successful, I think. But, now we are taking the time to develop better structures and processes, as well.
Runtastic's heart rate: the time line of a success story; Photo credit: TOSA
I am practical-thinking, but all of our cofounders are – I think that's why we work solution-oriented, and are not really afraid of failing. I am a fast decision-maker which is 'must' for a CEO, in my opinion. And I love talking to people, which is indispensable if you want to sell a mass product on a B2C basis. For that, you need to understand your target group and you that means talking to a lot of different people, which I genuinely enjoy.
Yes. Probably every day. I make so many decisions in one day that it's only logical that not all of them are the best. But, this doesn’t really concern or worry me, as long as I continue learning.
Not 'Big Data' as we know it; it's our very own 'Big Data' which we want to use with more efficiency. With 140.000 downloads daily, we have a lot of data available. We would never sell to third parties, but we want to add its value for our users. So, for example if someone wants to lose five kilos, we can provide targeted exercise plans from other users with similar demographics (who achieved success). The products and services we are currently working on, will work as health and fitness services and motivators at the same time.
But, before that, we have another app launch planned for the end of the year. Simultaneously, we want improve our Runtastic Ecosystem and turn it into a dashboard for users that hosts all their fitness activities. But, this will be a process and likely only 'complete' in the next two to three years.
Yes - for a better education system in Austria. Kids should learn English from an earlier stage. It still takes too long until we reach a level of English that allows us to broaden our horizons. And, like in the U.S., international business should be a higher priority subject in the education system. I will try to support this in the years to come and topics such as these might become my biggest mission for my time after Runtastic.
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