We spent the last 6 months doing hard work that isn’t fun or directly visible to customers. It just had to be done. It sucked. Building this foundation has been the hardest, most involved work with which I’ve ever been involved, and nothing has ever pushed me so far outside of my comfort zone. Conveniently enough, my daughter is 6 months old as well. Put the two together, and well, you can probably guess what kind of a ride it has been. Thankfully, it looks like the most challenging days are behind us, and we’re ready get back to making a product rather than managing a business.

Team We have awesome people on retainer to help with necessary but distracting things like bookkeeping, accounting, legal, system administration, and more. We also have enough profit to bring in some additional help from time to time so we can work with great people on fun stuff.

Technology We have the technical infrastructure in place to serve more requests than ever with our fastest response times ever, and we’ve just barely dipped our toes into performance tuning. We can also quickly and easily scale that infrastructure as we grow. Our other internal processes are running more smoothly than ever. We’ve refactored and improved significant amounts of code so that we’re running the latest and greatest with the most flexibility to adapt going forward.

Knowledge We have three years of interacting with real people using Sifter and offering great feedback and insight to how they use it. Those conversations have helped us create a crystal clear vision for where to take Sifter from here. We’ve also been able to observe how people really use Sifter. We have a clear understanding of which features see the most use and which features we could probably live without. I can’t put into words how excited I am to do something with all of this accumulated knowledge.

With Sifter, all I ever wanted was to build something that made people happy and have fun doing it. In some ways we’ve succeeded, but it’s been significantly more challenging than I ever anticipated. In four years, all we’ve really managed to do is build a business that can afford to let me turn Sifter into the product I always envisioned. This is just my way of drawing a line in the sand to say this is the week that we turned the corner. Check back in with me at the end of the year to see if we pulled it off.