You have to bend the rules once in a while.
Florin Cornianu is the CEO and co-founder of 123ContactForm, the online form builder. The company was founded together with Tudor Bastea in 2008 and it has clients all around the world. Florin and Tudor wanted to collect data without spending too much time building web forms. They hardly expected to provide a solution that would go on to become a business with over 1 million users worldwide.
123ContactForm is rapidly growing with an investment of over 1M EUR in 2015 from 3TS
Capital Partners. Now, the main company’s goal is to become the first choice of anyone who needs to build all types of forms and surveys.
Where did the idea for an online form builder product come from?
In the early days, Tudor & myself worked on several web based projects that required a way for the users to get in touch with the website owner. They needed a contact form. After building several, we decided to automate the process.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I arrive at the office at 8 am and start trimming through my inbox. First, I get rid of emails that don’t need my input, leaving those that matter. Then, I take them one by one, while also attending the several pre-planned meetings I got scheduled on that day. However, there is always something that comes up, some discussion that needs my input, so I get distracted every now and then. In the end, I always try to empty my inbox.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I am surrounded by a great team that makes sure they execute our vision.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
As an entrepreneur, I try to listen to my customers. I enjoy talking to them a lot, that’s why I’m involved in the Sales process as much as possible.
What advice would you give your younger self?
You’re on the right track, keep on working!
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?
You have to bend the rules once in a while.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Adapt, constantly adapt. I don’t despair when things don’t go as planned. We look into the situation and try another approach.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.
The best thing for 123ContactForm was the investment in the way we handle customer support. We keep it in house, we invest a lot of time into our support representatives to make sure they always know the answer.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
In one previous endeavor, I didn’t notice that the market changed drastically. The business died in a couple of months, but we didn’t give up and used the things we learned to start another project.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
This is completely unrelated, but here it goes: a lot of people try to loose weight, but they don’t have the time or expertise to cook the right food. I would deliver fresh, organic diet food every day to my subscribers.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I spent $100 for an upgrade of my phone. The new device was larger and offered a better experience when reading my emails.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I use SaneBox. They automatically check my emails as they arrive and deliver those that I might not read to a secondary inbox. I had to train its AI a bit, but now I save a lot of time because I don’t have to go through 50% of my emails that I’m not reading anyway.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Martian”. Although you might have seen the movie, the book is much better. I love that story: if you try hard enough, you can succeed even in the most difficult situation.
What is your favorite quote?
“You can’t handle the truth!”, Col Jessep, A Few Good Men (1992)
- You have to bend the rules once in a while.
- Adapt, constantly adapt. I don’t despair when things don’t go as plan. We look into the situation and try another approach.
- As an entrepreneur, I try to listen to my customers. I enjoy talking to them a lot, that’s why I’m involved in the Sales process as much as possible.
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Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.