[quote style=”boxed”]”You never know who you’re going to meet or how they might be able to help you. Make it a point to introduce yourself to someone new everyday.”[/quote]
Brendan Fleming is the creator and CEO of QuickJobs, an iOS app that makes it extremely easy to post and find friendly neighborhood jobs. He has set out to change the way people make a quick buck and find quick help. Brendan’s background has been primarily in sales but has always had a burning entrepreneurial side. Coming from a non-technical background, there was defiantly a learning curve when he wanted to start building apps but he took the challenge head on. With two more apps in the works, he has really found a love for connecting people easier and faster using this kind of technology.
What are you working on right now?
Right now I’m working on QuickJobs, a mobile app that lets you connect with other friendly people in your neighborhood to get things done. If you decide you don’t have the time or the knowledge to do something, you can post the job after answering three easy question and taking a picture. On the other side of the coin, you can search for jobs by using three easy filters to make sure it’s the job you want to do and the money you want to make. People are making some nice extra money by using the app.
Where did the idea for QuickJobs come from?
Pretty simple, I needed help moving a couch down a flight of stairs before the new couch got to my house. If the old couch was still in place, the movers were going to charge me $60 to move it. I just knew there was someone out there that would do it for half the cost but I had no way of getting instant help.
How do you make money?
Right now it’s completely free. In the future, it will be a freemium. There will always be a free product but you will also have the option to pay to see higher paying jobs.
What does your typical day look like?
Right now I still have my full time job so before that job starts I’m up at 5am sending emails to Asia checking in with my partner and head app guy. They’re 12 hours ahead of me so the times we communicate aren’t normal. I leave the house at about 6am and when I get home I fire off an email with all the things I’ve thought about during the day. He keeps me in check with reality and what’s dreamland. After my wife and our baby go to bed I normally stay up another couple of hours sending emails and working on QuickJobs any way I can.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I probably think of one idea a day so I really have to pick and choose which ones I follow through with. I start by writing every idea down in a little book. If I can’t get the idea out of my head or its constantly popping back up I start to move on it. I lay out my idea using sticky notes or whiteboard. After that I build some wire frames and start to show some people what I have cooking.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
I’m kind of obsessed with the app thing right now. I think just having a website isn’t enough anymore. Apps are the new websites and to prove that, look around when you’re out to dinner, at a sporting event, at the movies, or anywhere, everyone is looking at their phone or tablet.
What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?
My major was Hospitality Management. I set up an interview with the Ritz Carlton in Sarasota FL before graduation and the HR person told me I’d have a job waiting for me once I graduated school. I was so excited, I couldn’t wait. When I graduated, I packed my stuff and started the 13 hour drive to FL. I remember thinking the whole drive how I was going to set the world on fire, I just knew they were going to beg me to run one of their hotels. I was completely wrong, they made me a waiter. After the first week of my waiter job my manager came up to me and complemented my napkin folds. He said, “From now on, you’re the director of napkins” and he was dead serious. I put my two week notice in the next day. It only took me one week to realize, I would rather stay in that hotel one day instead of work there.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Part of me wants to say “Nothing” the whole experience has been an awesome way to learn. Whats nice, this whole thing started as a hobby. Just to see if I could do it type of thing. We’ve come this far, why slow down now? But another part wants to say be way more involved with entrepreneur geared classes, networks, meetings, etc. at an earlier age. Once you get hooked, it’s all you think about.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I try to meet at least one new person everyday. It’s hard getting out of your norm so this is an exercise I love to do. You never know who you’re going to meet or how they might be able to help you. Make it a point to introduce yourself to someone new everyday.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Hahaha, you want just one? The best was when a partner and I started a website that matched real estate appraisers and mortgage companies. We sunk a ton of money into the project as well as hired a call center to do the selling. We did all of this without ever testing the market. A few months later, the government changed the regulations and laws about Real Estate Appraisers being in direct contact with loan companies. It was a complete flop. I woke up the next day, started on the next project.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
A buddy and I were just talking about how cool it would be if when you purchase your plane ticket, you could choose your seat and who you’re going to sit next to based on their Face Book page. You can see who has similar likes, interests, mutual friends, same hometown, whatever. It would make the whole flight way more fun.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?
Before I had a child I would have answered this question like, “More waterslides”! Now that we have a baby, it makes me very sad to hear when kids are sick. I don’t know how I would fix the problem I just know it’s not fair.
Tell us something about you that very few people know?
There is one movie that will always make me cry, no matter how many times I watch it. (Email me if you want to know what it is)
What are your three favorite online tools or resources and what do you love about them?
Dropbox: it’s our go-to service (and app, website…) to exchange files with my partner
TestFlight: it’s the service and app we are using to deploy the beta tests of the app. They’ve made a very clumsy and time consuming task as easy as it comes
APP.NETt: it’s no secret that the developer community is moving there nowadays after twitter discouraged them from developing for their service. The community has really evolved since the early days, and the conversations there are deeper and more interesting than what the limited number of characters on twitter allows.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“Rework” by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. It helped me get motivated and made look at this crazy experience completely different. A lot of outside the box thinking.
David Allen’s “Getting Things Done”, which remains the reference in terms of improving your productivity.
There are several others, but one comes to mind as it is a fresh take on getting independent, and applies to much more than just being a consultant: Patrick Rhone’s “So, You Want To Be An Apple Consultant… (A Minimal Guide)”.
Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?
Dave Winer, @davewiner because he generally understands where the web and tech are going, though I don’t always agree with him
Jason Calacanis, @Jason because he’s a serial entrepreneur, has succeeded, and is always open and surprisingly available given his various ventures and interests.
When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?
I laugh out loud most of the day. I’m pretty clumsy so my weakness is when others trip, fall, or bump into things. I don’t take life all that serious, there is a time and a place but for the most part it feels really good to laugh.
Who is your hero?
I have a couple. My mom and dad because they’ve always been my cheerleaders. I could call either one of them right now and tell them I have a new idea that involves making healthy, dog poop energy shakes, they would be %100 behind me. The other is my wife. She’s the one that keeps me focused on one idea at a time and in check about what might not be the best idea ( dog poop energy shakes) and reminds me we have diapers to buy.
Do you have a number in mind that is a target of how much you would need to make to retire, say if you sold to Facebook or Yahoo! tomorrow?
That’s a tough question and one every entrepreneur should probably ask himself/herself when starting: what is your monetary goal? There are few answers, one of which should be, if you’re entrepreneur: don’t think about a fixed amount, and if you do, add three zeros to it! More reasonably, a wise man once told me that you’re rich when you can live off the interests of your interests
How many hours do you sleep?
Well, my business partner is a real Cinderella but I work 15 hours a day and sleep 5 hours. The rest of the time I spend taking care of our kids (14 month old baby and two dogs) and spend some time (not enough to my liking but that’s the price of fatherhood) with my wife.
Brendan Fleming on Facebook
Brendan Fleming on LinkedIn
Brendan Fleming on Twitter @quickjobsapp