For the love of getting things done

An extreme case of a startup founder being forced to wear many hats!

Coming from a mixed education of banking & finance as well as computer science & information systems, lead me to play many roles in my career thus far from a developer, to a quality engineer to a project management then product management on top of being a CEO of a web/mobile development agency.

Yet every few years I find myself going back to coding! Usually because of a spin off idea I have that I want created with little resources availabe for R&D.

So the itch of wanting to take control instead of waiting for resources to be available -whether funding or capacity- seems to be the driver of me learning something new to satisfy my need to get things done.

In 1998 it was VB, then ASP in 1999, moving shortly to Cold Fusuion in 2002, then a short experiement with RubyOnRails in 2006 followed by CSS then came PHP in 2009. At each of these junctures, I needed to design my own logo and UI as well for the same reasons.

I remember how fullfilling it is to design then code my design everytime my itch forced me to. For every idea I had, I came up with a name/domain, logo, colors, UI then coding would begin!

Then, the obsession would start and I would be designing/coding day and night until what I wanted came to life!

Today at 42 years of age, just when I thought I lost the itch; partly because I somehow had the resources to do the branding and development of my latest startup, still the budget being tight forced me yet again to face my new-technologies-are-hard-to-learn fear and I found myself first using Sketch to do the app UI design then learning nodejs in order to create a backend I disparately need for my realtime database on Firebase. In addition finding cheaper ways I could create neat how-to-videos.

It’s been quite an exciting time for me the past few months, staying up till around 3am to make sure whatever I was working on works well in addition to all the other things needed like getting users on board and getting feedback.

Building web and mobile applications is an amazing task, specially having the capacity to be the product owner and the startup founder at the same time! Though the amount of conflict is not healthy of course; the coder in me wants to push away extra complex work which the designer in me wants me not to, then comes the product and business needs I myself ask to be fullfilled now, not next month or so.

I am sure once extra funding and resources are available I am going to scratch a lot of the work for a well done one, yet meanwhile the CEO in me gets to deliver on the goals set for the startup.

Whoever said bootstrapping isn’t fun!

Razan Khatib

Razan Khatib

Playing at the intersection of culture, technology, and values. Trying to structure my thoughts and share experiences, learnings, and insights. Co-founder of @spring_apps
Amman, Jordan