Tech Stacks Designed To Scale Small Businesses (S7E7)

What you’ll see this episode:

Tune in to this episode and witness something new right off the bat: the behind-the-scenes battle for the titles of Most Investible and Most Valuable, which we’ve never shown on camera before. Then, on Day 5, get ready for an exciting showdown as the contestants gear up for their ultimate opportunity to secure a victory on the final day. This crucial moment brings with it the last lesson centered around technology to scale, where the participants face their ultimate challenge of creating an effective tech stack. It’s a must-watch episode as the Bloxers unleash their final strategies and surprises in a thrilling last-ditch effort.


Last chance challenge

Although the Blox-Off is over, Night 4 isn’t finished yet! It’s the “afterparty,” where 20 teams are getting grilled to see who will take the coveted titles of Most Investible and Most Valuable. In a rapid-fire question-and-answer style, these heavy hitters are put to the test late into the night.

But it’s a new morning on Day 5, and the last lesson of the season is helping the entrepreneurs view themselves as tech companies in order to scale. But will the lesson truly click with them? They’ll find out during the day’s challenge, which is to create an aspirational tech stack and demonstrate how they will use it. Their confidence is running high, as many felt they did a great job demonstrating their knowledge of the day’s lesson, and even more feeling like they received priceless advice in the consults. With a last chance to see the Blox-Off, a few new faces are able to break into the top – but you’ll have to head over to Episode 8 to see how they fare, plus, find out who won the Blox!


Technology Stacks Designed To Scale Small Businesses

Scaling doesn’t only refer to the production of a product but also encompasses various aspects like scaling the sales funnel, supply chain, employee training, customer education, and more. The example of Starbucks is given to illustrate that even brick-and-mortar businesses can be viewed as scalable tech companies if they have a competitive advantage and can operate at a large scale. The concept of a tech stack is introduced, referring to all the software and equipment used in the business to create value. This includes software for lead acquisition, revenue capture, customer service, product distribution, customer organization, employee management, investor relations, security, data storage, marketing collateral creation, accounting, and even managing the tech stack itself. Not all pieces of technology are easy to build or implement on their own, and sometimes it may be necessary to hire tech contractors to assist with the implementation and maintenance of certain tools.

When hiring a tech contractor, it’s important to find the right fit. Going with a firm that is too big or established might be costly and not suitable for early-stage ventures, while going too small with an inexperienced individual may result in an unreliable solution. The main variables to consider when choosing a contractor include their ability to do the job correctly, fulfill warranties, avoid corporate problems, and have a passion for helping early-stage entrepreneurs. Approach technology investments like an investor, considering ROI potential. Technology can greatly increase business value with higher returns. Find vendors who understand long-term vision and offer transparent pricing based on different development stages. Caution against using equity to pay vendors, but if necessary, establish vesting schedules and maintain cash/equity balance. When interviewing technologists, consider vision alignment, enthusiasm, startup culture fit, communication skills, support team, and relevant experience.


Key Takeaways From This Episode:

  1. The things we’re “scaling” isn’t necessarily just the production of our product. It could be scaling the funnel, scaling the supply chain issues, scaling the training of our employees, scaling the education of our customers….there’s a million things. Your product doesn’t have to be a piece of technology for you to view your business like a technology company.
  2. A “tech stack” is All of the software & equipment we use to create value for the business. This could be software to acquire leads, or nurture them, or capture their revenue, or induce retention, or deploy the product/service to them, distribute the product/service, customer service, etc. 
  3. When it comes to our tech stacks, we need to pick the right tool, for the right job, at the right time. Each new tool we add is a tool that has to be learned, paid for, and taught to employees.
  4. Depending on where our technological literacy is, and how difficult of an asset it will be to build or implement, we will need to bring in a tech contractor to help us.
  5. Equity can and should be considered ONLY if your entire venture is a piece of technology such as a mobile application


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