As I mentioned in my initial post about SAIL, we were unbelievably excited to get out of the Lab and test the Stitch/SAIL integration with customers. We took a road trip East to share the good news with some of our closest friends at Etsy and Shopify!
After working hand in hand with the SAIL team to get all the bugs worked out, it was time to get this integration in the hands of some Stitchers. Lucky for them, we make house calls! Several of our customers opened their doors, workshops and stores to let us test our most recent awesomeness. One example is our good friend Lisa Andersen Shaffer of Zelma Rose. Lisa was the first to get her hands on our integration in July and she has been swiping away ever since. She wrote an outstanding blog post about it recently. If you haven’t seen it, be sure to check it out. Lisa shares the best practices she’s already discovered and will share more in the future.
On the Road
Our first stop was to Brooklyn, NY. Yep, that’s right. We made a trip to the handmade capital of America - the Etsy headquarter building. We first visited Brooklyn last December, directly after we integrated Stitch with Etsy. That was a great trip because it enabled us to introduce ourselves in person and gain a better understanding of what went on at their home base, along with the direction of the company. That relationship has continued to grow throughout the year and we were very excited to share this integration with them and their community before the busy holiday show season.
This trip was even better than the last. We had an opportunity to visit with more people and share the good news about SAIL with their mobile and seller education teams. Brian Hamilton, VP of the SAIL project at VeriFone was also able to join us for the event, so we had the whole gang there! Being in a room with a group of people that are doing everything they can to help businesses save time and sell more is an exciting experience. We couldn’t be more appreciative of the opportunity to share the good news with Etsy. A special thanks to Carrington Williams (Business Development - Etsy) for helping us organize the day.
The second stop on our East Coast swing was North of the border. We shot up to Ottawa to meet with our good pals at Shopify. This was our first trip to Ottawa, and let me be very clear when I say this, it was unbelievable! (I feel like Barack Obama with that, “let me be very clear” thing.) After visiting Ottawa and seeing the culture at Shopify, we had a hard time saying goodbye. They were unbelievably gracious hosts. Brennan Loh (Business Development at Shopify) provided us the opportunity to meet so many people on their team and discuss how they have gone from a handful of talented engineers, to a cutting edge commerce company empowering over 30,000 entrepreneurs and small businesses to reach their goals.
A special thank you to Brennan for his hustle all day. Also, Mr. Harley Finklestein (CPO), for imparting wisdom on us and taking pity on a scrappy start up by treating us to dinner at an awesome Ottawa restaurant. Keep on coolify-ing commerce guys! You’re onto something special up there.
Parting Shots (Sports Reporters Reference)
Since we are constantly working to make Stitch happen in the Lab, we rarely get an opportunity to get out and see our stakeholders live. Everyone that is affected by Stitch is a stakeholder. From our team, to our customers, to our partners and investors, we’re all a part of this journey. It’s important to stay in close contact with them and share good news when we have a chance.
Finally, something really struck me when we were visiting the Shopify office building, aside from all the great people. They had inspirational signs and artwork everywhere, but one really resonated. When I asked Brennan about it, he said their CEO Tobi (awesome guy, by the way) preaches this saying, and I have to agree. People working on great projects should be proud of what they’re doing and tell people about it. Not in a boastful or tacky way, but in a way that shows their passion and how they’re putting their heart into everything they do. We have a weekly “all hands” meeting at the Lab when everyone talks about where we stand on our initiatives. We can do an even better job of this. Sometimes we get so caught up in the day to day that we forget to share all the great things we may be developing. There are people everywhere doing what they can to really change the world; and it’s exciting as hell! So simply, “Do things, and tell people.” It’s an interesting concept. We welcome you to share what you're doing with us! We're here to support our customers and stakeholders. Leave us a comment below :)
It was an excellent trip and we really appreciate both teams allowing us into their world for the day. More to come in the future, but for now, it's back to Stitchin'.