Aman Singh’s ComplimentKarma is an internet startup where employers, employees, friends, and business can build an online reputation through listing achievements and by giving compliments. It’s a transparent online system that includes the ability for employers to give monetary rewards which can potentially show prospective employees that you’re willing to recognize and reward talent. Further, this visibility also works in favor of employees who do good work and are rewarded in a way that’s visible to other employers online.
We had a chance to talk to Aman Singh recently about Compliment Karma, and here’s what he shared with us:
How’d you come up with the name for your company?
While short listing possible names we used a lot of factors such as following:
- Must convey positive message as the site is all about good karma and mutual appreciation
- Must use some word conveying Thank you, Kudos, Compliment etc
- Domain name availability
- Made up of dictionary words instead of inventing new words
- Hard to mistype
- Easy to pronounce
- General enough for future flexibility
- Understandable by wider audience
- Sounds cool factor
- Keyword searched by target audience
What’s the very first thing you do at work every day?
Check for user feedback, usage stats and quickly plan day’s activities.
How many people did you start the company with and how many people work for you now?
Two of us co-founded the company and both of us are the only people working here for now. We will be soon looking to expand our team.
Remember the early days starting up? Maybe you can share one anecdote that describes the struggle you went through?
Being still in our early days we face a lot of struggles every day. So far, finding the right partner was a big struggle for both of us.
Aman had the concept documented in 2007 and since then he kept looking for the right partner, who could be a great back-end developer and easy to work with.
Mike was looking for a partner who could handle the product design, sales and marketing side of the business, while providing quick & reliable feedback.
When we found each other we immediately went along very well and to date our friendship is going strong.
How do you handle frustration? When/how was the last time you dealt with frustration?
Staying focused on the end goal drives us and keeps us from falling prey to frustration. We continuously strive to find creative ways and think out of the box to find optimal solutions to any issues.
The last time we had to deal with frustration was when we wanted to continue development but at the same time needed to have some surety that user’s even want to use the service we were developing. So to prevent any doubts about the viability of the product we conducted several demo & feedback sessions and even released the private beta version in few companies. This let us closely monitor the usage of the application and we continued to refine it as per user feedback, while learning that users in fact loved the product.
What’s your office environment like?
We both work from our dedicated home offices.
How do you picture your company in 5 years?
So far each day brings us a new challenge and we are busy juggling multiple aspects of our growing company. We look forward to being successful in delivering more and more benefits to all our users while they are actively using the solution to its full potential.
Who or what inspires you?
When not busy coding Mike loves to join his kids to go biking, and Aman likes to meet with fellow entrepreneurs and catch up on those superhero movies and some playtime with his 2 year old son is a luxury like none other.
How’d you fund this venture?
Got any great bootstrapping tips for the lean startups out there?
Shop around and try to not shell out too much money initially, unless have a solid reason for it.
Get your MVP out the door as early as possible.
What would you be doing if you had one year off and $500,000 to spend?
Probably travel to few countries and just chill and relax.
Do you consider yourself a successful entrepreneur right now? If not, what’s it gonna take to make you feel successful?
Once there are plenty of users using the service satisfactorily and the company is stable and self sustaining, that would be a great moment.
Website you couldn’t live without and why?
Google Services, they are reliable, free and one stop shop.
Mobile App you’re in love with and why?
Google maps, it helps a lot when driving in a new area.
Dogs or cats?
Number 1 country you’ve always wanted to visit but haven’t yet?
What’s the greatest thing about your company?
It is 100% free to use for individual accounts.
Unlike other enterprise applications, ComplimentKarma is an open application, so even if you switch employers, you still own your reputation and take it with you to the next job.
You are not limited to use it only with your coworkers and professional contacts, but you can also use it with your friends, family and local businesses to build your social reputation.
We have built a cool functionality, where you can forward compliments just from your email without even needing to go to the site. Mobile and tablet apps are also coming soon.
We have tried to keep the User Interface very simple and uncluttered, while using the latest AJAX based UI elements, wherever necessary.
Major focus has been given in delivering real tangible benefits to all users and creating a win-win opportunity for everyone, while leveraging the positivity and good karma involved in appreciating each other.
Where can our readers get ahold of you?
Also, we would really appreciate if your readers could help spread the word in their networks, and spare some time to have a thorough look at the website and try to understand the multitude of benefits that they can achieve with this simple gesture of complimenting their contacts.