Today's Entrepreneur is Bill Clerico, CEO of WePay. WePay is an online payments platform for individuals, organizations, and businesses. WePay helps people sell tickets to events, send invoices, sell items online, and accept donations online. WePay also provides an API that allows developers to access its payments platform.
I am a(n):
Companies I've founded or co-founded:
Startups I worked for:
If you are an entrepreneur, why?
Serendipitously fell into it...
My favorite startups:
Kiva, Dropbox, Weebly
What's most frustrating and rewarding about entrepreneurship/innovation?
At WePay customer support is the most important part of our business model, but every once in a while someone is unhappy and it's crushing. Also, in our business, antiquated banking technologies that impede innovation can be frustrating but we're making good headway at improving them and insulating our users from them.
The most rewarding thing for me is being able to offer people a truly simple online payments solution that frees them from the hassle of exchanging checks and hounding people for money. Another rewarding thing is knowing that each and every employee I hire has the same goal - to change payments. Especially since we are growing so fast, it makes you feel like you're on a winning team every day.
What's the No. 1 mistake entrepreneurs make?
Not listening to customers and just trying to develop products they think they'll like in a vacuum.Customers might not know how they want a product to be designed, but they know what they want to use it for, and it's imperative to pick up the phone and talk to them regularly. You really need to be flexible. WePay would be out of business if the product we set out to make was what we actually brought to market, but at the beginning we talked to each and every customer that used the product and learned what they wanted.
What are the top three lessons you've learned as an entrepreneur?
1. Listen to your customers - in both words and actions
2. Hire only excellent people
3. Treat each customer the way you'd like to be treated if someone was handling your money