Yanir Calisar's career trajectory put him in a unique vantage point to absorb skills from different disciplines and develop as an entrepreneur. Learn how.
A common mistake amongst entrepreneurs is becoming obsessed with a product idea and winding up building something nobody wants or needs. Yanir has managed to learn the technical & business skills via his involvement with various startups throughout his career that have allowed him to build a portfolio of micro niche products that sustain him while he works on his moonshot product Whastlly. In this interview on my last day in Koh Tao, Thailand we talk about Yanir’s process for rapidly validating a product idea and hammering out a proof of concept in 48hrs, his philosophy on lean product development, the startup scene in Tel Aviv Israel, stories of advanced open water night diving, delicious hummus and more. Enjoy!
Sean Tierney (00:02:17):
All right. Hey, everybody. Welcome to the podcast. I’m your host, Sean Tierney, and I am here today with Yanir Calisar. Yanir is an entrepreneur and experienced marketing technology technologist with a track record of success. He’s worked at four different companies that went through acquisitions in Sitara acquired by Marketo, then Marketo acquired by Vista ventures, which was then required by Adobe. He also worked at op Trinsic, later acquired by Gainsight. You’re near is founder of a company called overstack IO, which has run for the last three years and as of a year ago, also a new company called Whatslly. You’re near as skilled in marketing automation and CRM, account based marketing analytics, and the customer journey has an MBA and big data and AI and focuses primarily on marketing and product management. Welcome. Yanir. Yeah. Hi Sean. Great to be here in Koh Tau with you today. Great day over here. It is a great day. And I’m going to, I’ll let you kind of paint the picture of where we’re at. I mean, so this is, how would you describe this paradise?
Yanir Calisar (00:03:15):
I think, yeah. Paradise is this is the right the right ward. I think a, it’s great being here. The weather is awesome. I just finished my first first time diving course. So it was very interesting and it’s, there are great sites over here and Koh Tau you just did a night dive last night. Last night. Yeah. It was a bit scary at the beginning, but we survived. We survived to tell the story. But definitely it, cause that was one of the awesomest places I’ve been to.
Sean Tierney (00:03:44):
I 100% agree with you. I just got my advanced as well two weeks ago. I think there’s probably no better place to, to knock it out. It’s definitely cheaper than other spots I’ve been to for sure. For sure.
Yanir Calisar (00:03:55):
And Thailand in general is awesome. I love my time over here my second time. So I guess the third time would be even Baird there. So it’s getting better and better.
Sean Tierney (00:04:06):
Okay, cool. Well, just some context for our listeners on how we met. So we both work at a workspace down the Hill here. And I think just one day I overheard you on the phone, it sounded like a, a product pitch and the stuff you were talking about, I said, I got to talk to this guy. He’s doing all the same stuff that I’m involved with it.
Yanir Calisar (00:04:23):
Yeah. It was actually a, a conference, a meeting like a, there were a hundred people on the other side of the video conferencing. And I was pitching my new solution, Watson it was an accelerator sponsored by very big companies in Europe and they just asked me to attend like physically, but then I told them, Oh, I can’t because I’m currently not in Israel. The, the funny thing is that they didn’t ask me where I’m at, so I survived that because if I would tell them where I’m at, it was a bit difficult to explain. But yeah, for sure. Cool. Dow great place highly recommended to visit here if your digital nomads and traveling around.
Sean Tierney (00:05:12):
Yeah. Cool. And also just preface in a heads up here, if you hear some background noise, we’ve got motorcycles that are me going by. It’s just this, it is what it is. It’s Thailand. So we’ll do our best. So what is, what’s like, can you just describe what that product is? Yeah, sure. So
Yanir Calisar (00:05:29):
The I think this is the most interesting product I’ve been working on for the past 10 years. Basically a year ago I identified the problem that today’s companies are communicating like they do at boffin behind to make customers happy from the service that they’re getting and then, and doing improve customer experience of course. And then customers today want, wants to use Watson for all communication that they’re having with anyone. On the other hand com customers are unable to, to communicate with customers over Watson because it’s a closed a messaging app. Like you cannot integrate it with almost anything. So then I realized that there is a way to integrate it with Salesforce where the CRM of Salesforce and this is basically the most popular CRM in the world. So once I correct this this way, then I started developing the product.
Yanir Calisar (00:06:37):
It took me 48 hours to get to the first POC of the product and within five days I got my first customer for that. So basically the neighbors customer facing agents in the companies to talk with customers the same way they’re already doing today over WhatsApp, but then just sync and copy the checks that they are having into Salesforce automatically. Then also while they’re chatting with the customers, see old and knowing information about the customer, for example job title, email address whatever they want, whatever known information they have about this customer. And so this allows someone to not even change their habits of how they communicate just to continue using WhatsApp and that get all the benefits of basically using like one of these chat clients. Exactly, exactly. And for, from the customer perspective, it’s amazing because the experience is much better.
Yanir Calisar (00:07:32):
They get better service because their agents know them better and they are using the messaging app that they want. They like most from the company’s perspective, it’s a game changer because now managers, like sales managers customer service managers are able to gain visibility of these interactions that then T today they didn’t know what’s going on there and in the future where a appending to expand our capabilities and also provide sentiment analysis and more deeper analytics about these interactions. So, yeah. Yeah. And I think this is what, and what I overheard your conversation, this is what grabbed me is because in my role at Pagely, I’ve been involved in exploring alternate mediums of communication. And we’ve gone through a number of chatbots between old arc and drift and inner column and some of these systems that you use to chat with your, your people on your website.
Yanir Calisar (00:08:30):
But in addition to that, also, you know, getting out of the email inbox. So what can we, you know, if email starts failing and they’re not responding to it, can we get them through LinkedIn? Can we get them through Twitter or Quora or however, what other handles we have to be able to go and approach that and message that person. So this is fascinating to me that you’re able to marry this and make it a seamless experience for, for the customer. And actually you mentioned chat bots and chat bots, like Watson doesn’t replace chatbots because if, for example, you are a bank and most of your customers just contacting you in like by phone or by your chat, your web chat or something. So in most cases they will ask common questions like, ah, your business hours is your nearest location and stuff like that.
Yanir Calisar (00:09:14):
And this is great use case for using chat bots, right? Just giving the same answer. But let’s say my insurance agents or like the telecom, the company and the telecom company I working on for my business, I expect my person agents to give me the answers that they need. And in this case, even without, what’s the, I’m talking to my agent directly over Watson. So like we’re not replacing these parties. We’ll continue the same as it used to be, but now it would just enabling companies to do it in a much smarter way.
Sean Tierney (00:09:54):
Well, and imagine another benefit, cause you could just connect your agent directly with the person and then now you’re having like all these one off WhatsApp conversations, but then it’s not routing through the company. So then a, they don’t have like transparency and analytics and like you said, sentiment analysis and all these benefits you get by routing it through the company.
Yanir Calisar (00:10:11):
Exactly. So I imagine that’s going to be like a really important thing. Yeah. And actually a, we’re seeing great success so far where we’re the working with the few thousands of companies around the world in 17 countries. And yeah, we’re expecting to grow very, very fast. Where now we recently became approved Salesforce app exchange partners. So soon we’ll be in there a ups store. And yeah, great. Great. Things are going on these days.
Sean Tierney (00:10:41):
I know, I think you were doing the contract for that when I was doing a contract for a very large one of our clients as well. And we were both kind of commiserating on these contracts. Can you talk about, because I think one of the most fascinating things from our conversation thus far before this was how you rapidly prototype, you know, you come up with the POC, the proof of concept in 48 hours, setting yourself very hardcore time constraints to be able to do that in the businesses. And you’ve made many businesses, a lot of these little micro niche products. Can you just talk about your approach there and how you’ve, how you do that?
Yanir Calisar (00:11:15):
So you call it I liked the name. You gave it a micro-niche. So let, let me just go back a little bit in time. So you mentioned the, the companies I worked worked for and I had when I started my career 10, 11 years ago. So I, I just to add like some background, some technical background. I used to build websites when I was in high school. And then when I started, when I joined the insight, Tara was the first employee over there. I joined the two co-founder, Mickey alone and Mike Taylor. And they told me, okay, we’re doing marketing technology. We’re developing a web personalization platform for B to B companies. And it was, it sounded like unclear to me. I didn’t know what it means, but then Mike, Mike tell him, told me, don’t worry, I will teach you everything you need to know.
Yanir Calisar (00:12:11):
We’re just, you do sales marketing, I’ll onboard you to this space. And I think that they’ll preach unity of working in a small starter from, from day one to the point where it got the choir. I think it’s a great experience. And then helped me to identify challenges and pain points that companies are having and understand the process of how to combine it out to add it into the product. So many times that pen that I went to the engineering team and told them, look, this customer and this is a very important customer. You wants the product to do also this, these things. And then like seeing how their brainstorming about how to do something like that, how they’re developing it and now they’re deploying it and then go back to the customer and explaining how we solved is pinpoint.
Yanir Calisar (00:13:11):
It was very, very interesting to see and he taught me how to out to think that way. So I don’t think you must work for Stata, but this is like even a part time work in a small startup, early stage startup gives you this kind of experience. And after, afterwards when we joined the Marquetto in 2014, it was, I suddenly saw that the same processes that happened at insight Tara also happened in big companies. Like we were 1500 people back then in Marketo. And it also had the same processes. But this time it took longer. And then I realized that even that there is some opportunity over here because big companies when on the gets great ideas from customers, it might take them sometimes six months, sometimes a year and a half. And sometimes they, it will never happen until they will get to a new feature or a new product or a new part of existing product.
Yanir Calisar (00:14:20):
So I realized there is a huge opportunity here because if you be like small company that did just develops these small features, these micro products I think this is a game changer. Yeah. And this is, this is our why what led me to think like any creative way of, okay, let’s identify more and more and more pain points that companies are trying to are facing with and let’s build these micro products and let’s do it quickly. Yeah. Because then like, even I beats larger company than, than your company cannot compete with you. So you happen to be in these companies. So you’re basically in the
Sean Tierney (00:15:12):
Firefight and like, you know, getting bombarded with a lot of feedback and you had a lot of, a source of a lot of ideas that were coming at you. I guess what I am curious about is how do you sleuth out what those problems are? You know, it seems like a, typically what happens is someone gets an idea in their head and they go and build it and they haven’t validated demand and they haven’t proven that th th a lot of people want this and they’re very motivated to pay for it. Do you have any advice for people in that situation like, that are not in a role where they’re exposed to all these challenges and they can kind of start to make patterns out of it? Yeah.
Yanir Calisar (00:15:44):
Yanir Calisar (00:16:52):
I tried to play with video analysis and like I just played around every time I had like crazy idea. I told him, I said, let’s just play around with it like for a day or two. And then you get more and more experiencing that. And every time I was reading a lot about new startups. I was I figured that most of the startups are not inventing something completely new out of the blue. They’re just taking one solution from one space, for example, or from customers’ success. And then just converting it funds, forming it into marketing or from marketing into sales. For example. We talked about account based marketing. So I think that the Columbus marketing, and I had the, an interesting conversation about it a week ago also with someone that is coming from the sales.
Yanir Calisar (00:17:51):
Can you just define that term for the people who don’t know what it is? I know what it is. So account based marketing means that so it will, it will be easier to say where it started. So a long time ago, and we were talking about like eight to 10 years ago sales teams and marketing teams weren’t very good friends because marketing used to work very, very hard to generate leads that they taught would be amazing. And then every quarter or every six months, they would come to the salespeople, tell them, here we’ve got two great leads, but the sales team the warrant, so happy with these leads because these are not the leads that they wanted to get. And then slowly what happened, the marketing team teams got very, very angry about it.
Yanir Calisar (00:18:44):
Then they told them, okay, so stop everything you gonna tell us which companies you want us to bring you? And then they said, okay, no problem. We have this list ready, every, every quote that we have it ready over here. We have like hundred companies that were trying to chase after this is the list. Now get us these leads. And then the marketing teams said, okay, they took the list and they started to look for solutions that will help them get leads from these companies. So I’m, I’m going back to, he say Tara, I think say Tara for example, we identified that we are very, very, the sales team identified that we’re very, very successful with specifically with Marquetto customers. So it was from that moment on, it was very easy. We just got the list of Marketo customers and we started targeting them in any way we could, emails, social media, even events.
Yanir Calisar (00:19:41):
Yanir Calisar (00:20:41):
So we just got these lists and we started chasing them. Sometimes it was a one by one. And then we started using our own technology. So, for example, if someone from company X, which is our competitors, a customer is visiting our website we will tell them, check out our competitors a a table like a re read. I’ll wear different though. I’ll wear a better than what you’re using now. And even more advanced than that we, because we knew exactly at what dates they implemented the pixel on the website. So we estimated that there is a year until they will need to renew. So three months before, before that date we were just contacting them directly and telling them, you are about to renew your contract, check us, check out our solution before you’re doing it. Nice. And we actually worked, we were actually managed to get crazy deals that way. Yeah. so and this was in Beck in 2012. We didn’t even know that it’s called account based marketing because account based marketing wasn’t a, I real name. My real thing back then.
Sean Tierney (00:22:01):
I mean to me a company’s marketing is just starting with the end in mind. It’s, it’s like, like you said, figure out the list of the people that you want to go get. And rather than just sit here and throw off a bunch of things and hope that you get people coming through SEO and what Ryan pray spray and pray, you’re basically starting with the end in mind. Say, look, this is the Alexa list of the top hundred customers with these criteria are built with their data and eyes or whatever you, whatever source you want to use. And then you’re saying, how do we go hunt these people? How do we go, you know, what are the types of activities that will make those folks come to us? Or they will allow us to get access to them?
Yanir Calisar (00:22:34):
Yeah. And the fun thing that this approach actually works, it actually works. So today for my business, I’m doing it still manually. I’m not like I’m doing it with some hacks that I built. So for example, I know how to identify Salesforce customers and I know how to identify their communicating with customers over WhatsApp. And then I have this list of thousands of companies that I’m conducting them
Sean Tierney (00:23:04):
[Inaudible] directly. And are you using an automated outreach to do that or are you like one by one cold calling? How are you doing that? Yes, so
Yanir Calisar (00:23:11):
I’m we tried doing cold calling. The thing is that I know that to make it a worth it, so we need to contact like the larger teams, the larger companies and then it’s a bit more difficult doing this. But we have different methods. I can tell you that because we’re very lean yet. So most cases instead of just using big and very pricey, a solution where I’m just, you know, writing a few lines of codes and just ultimating it I’m a lot integral math and I’m also their partner. And I think integral Mata is a great solution. I’m just automating everything. What do you, what do you, let me ask you this, what do you like about Integra mat better than Zapier? Cause I’m a huge Zapier fan, but I’m very interested always in seeing what else is.
Yanir Calisar (00:24:03):
First of all, I think they’re a user interfaces much more friendly. It’s much easier to start with integral maths rather than a Zapier. I think it’s the look and feel. Betsy, I tried, I tried like, because I’m a technical person so I dance too. So if it’s a very technical product and you need to code and stuff, so okay, it’s fine. But if it shouldn’t be a technical product, so it needs to be super, super easy to operate. Like in a click, click of a button, you have everything set up. So like two, two par, two sides here. And I think that Zapier is Zapier folds in between. So it’s a bit technical, but it should be easy to operate. So it somewhere it’s, for example, I don’t like WordPress. I am sorry saying to say that you realize Pagely is what a WordPress host.
Yanir Calisar (00:25:00):
Yeah, I’m sorry. I like that are great solutions that work on a WordPress, but like just walking with the base basic UI. I don’t know. I personally don’t, don’t really like it. For example, my website overstock, I, Oh, I started building it with WordPress, but then I just realized, okay, I can do it with HTML and one day and that’s it. I just want to give a, go back to your original question. So I think that like combining a few spaces and then I think that’s just I voted the ward PRIs, so I learned in the past three years because I’m running as a one man show. And I have like teams all around the world. So I learned how to outsource my work. Whatever I can do or I, I can let someone else do, I’m just doing it.
Yanir Calisar (00:26:02):
Even if it costs, if it’s a bit pricey, but it’s worth it because like, it will take me two weeks to do it, but on the other hand, I can let it to someone that will do it’s two days and I’ll do more important stuff. So ward person for example, I’m just outsource it, let it someone else to do it, and I’m just fixing whatever it needs later on. Cool. Cool. So does this the WhatsApp the product, or is this, sorry, what’s Lee? Is the name of it just what’s least sustain you? Or is this kind of the big bet and you have other kind of bread and butter stuff that sustains you? Like how do you pay your way? Yes. So so basically this is the like the more sustainable company today because it’s a more mature, obviously watch.
Yanir Calisar (00:26:53):
They’re still growing. And I’m spending most of that nighttime on Watson, like 95% of my time. I just, I’ll say a few words about overstock. So the idea of overstock was exactly what I described earlier because I realized that there are many a small but very painful problems that companies are facing with specifically marketing teams are facing with these days. So I realized that if I am able to identify these painful, they S these pain points develop lean products in a very short period of time and sell them quickly in a very foldable price. So this is very interesting and do it as a one man show so I can be very, very foldable. So then I started developing more and more products. These days I have 15 products that are running. Most of these products don’t even have a UI, so these are just processes that run on a daily or weekly basis.
Yanir Calisar (00:28:04):
And I’m just sending them to companies to solve that problem. And just the process that I’m doing when I’m developing new products is in most of the cases customer is approach to me. So I work with many partners and many great companies, great customers that they have and they’re very innovative. They’re just, they have a lot. They always try new things. They always try to get better in what they do. And when you are acting like that, you will always find challenges and problems in your daily work. And whenever. And I always tell them, whenever you’re doing something twice, let me know. And every conversation, every call that I have with them, I’m in some point of the call and asking them, okay, what doesn’t work, what, what is broken, what needs to be fixed. And then this is a great approach.
Yanir Calisar (00:29:00):
And I think that’s the second thing that I would say besides like getting to know many spaces besides your specific space is to always talk to people and get a and hear what’s, what’s, what’s bothering them in their daily work. Because this is a great, first of all, it’s a great position to be at the place where you’re getting all the problems and then this is a great way to validate your products, the things that you are working on because if you just wake up and say, okay, let’s develop, I dunno something, some app for dogs. So this is nice. You talked about it. It’s okay cause you have like 10 dogs. But if you see one problem that comes from the customer and then you, the next question should be, how much are you willing to pay to solve this problem?
Yanir Calisar (00:29:53):
And I’m asking that because there are friends of mine and we’re ever good relationship, but they sometimes they say, okay, I will pay like thousand dollars per month to set to solve this problem. And then I’m saying, okay, this is, this is an opportunity. This is interesting. A song. Can you just mention what is an example problem? We were talking before over. Yeah. so I had a one customer asking me like a two and a half years ago. He told me like, we’re trying to build a data Lake for the marketing organization. And then just EV, all the information, all the data from all our platforms in this data Lake. And later on connect this data Lake, this data warehouse connected to some BI tool. In their case it was Tableau and, but the one thing that we cannot connect is Marquetto.
Yanir Calisar (00:30:47):
So what can you do to help us? And then I realized, okay, there is an opportunity because this is a common problem, a common challenge that probably many companies trying to solve. And then I just told them, okay, let’s do a project. We’ll develop beats. Both of us will have the IEP for this development. And we can do whatever we want. If you want to make the product go ahead, I will go and make it the product. And this was, this became one of my most successful products. And then I already cologne this product, this project for a few other companies. Because this is a really painful thing. It’s a problem. You cannot connect one of your marketing stack into your data Lake. And then another problem that I guess most of the marketers on the audience will, will our, our aware of is attribution marketing attribution.
Yanir Calisar (00:31:46):
So we all I’m putting a lot of efforts in tagging our links with UTM parameters and like tracking them on a, on Google analytics. This is great, but in B2B where it takes like sometimes even a year for a deal to be closed so people don’t have only one touchpoint. They have multiple touch points. Sometimes it’s hundreds of touch points and you want to be able to track everything. So you can go and buy a solution for $100,000 per year. That’s like captures these UTMs. But I have a solution that does that in a much more affordable way. And you can have all the data, like I don’t have a platform and like dashboards and reports and stuff, you will just get the CSV file that shows you all the data. And then in big companies, it’s great. This is exactly what they want. They want the role data to upload it to their very expensive BI platform. So this is a solution of mine is called the touchpoints.
Sean Tierney (00:32:51):
Multitouch attribution. Southern your website. Yeah. So this is a perfect example though, where unless you have the insight from having talked to a number of people and realizing all they want is a CSV. They just want the raw data. You don’t need to go build some complex UI to expose this and dashboards and whatnot, like you said, cause that’s not even really what they want. So that type of insight though only comes through having a lot of those conversations and really getting to understand like what they want out of it. And the other thing like, just to unpack a lot of what you said, cause there’s a couple of interesting things in there I think is that you know, a lot of times people I think start dreaming up an app and they can only think in terms of, well, what can I build that has an interface and yada yada.
Sean Tierney (00:33:32):
You know, like that’s, that’s their thought of like I got to build an app. When you said there is no UI for a lot of the products that you made, it’s just a, it’s a problem that you’re solving in the background. Right. And those likely is a lot more painful to these companies when it’s something like, you know, is important is what you’re calling the data Lake. What are, yeah, what I would call it data warehouse. You know, that is like the core, you know, what drives business intelligence for a company and making sure that data is accurate. That’s a hugely, you know, painful problem for them. And so you can, yeah, I just think it’s fascinating that people get seduced by the idea of what they can see when these little silent background micro products are actually probably you can charge a lot more for them.
Yanir Calisar (00:34:54):
Yeah, that’s right. Then actually like the problem that I’m seeing with many startups is that like in order, like once you have a nice idea, then you need like to hire developers, you need to hire marketing themes, you need to hire sales people and then your product. You cannot sell your product and affordable prices anymore because it doesn’t worth it. So like you, you must charge like 10 times more than what you would do if it was very a lean product, a micro product. And then I think that’s, and then you add like thousands of features and you becoming like these big vendors. So I think that’s the trick is to be focused on the one thing that you are trying to solve. And the one problem that is the most painful problem for the companies that you are are trying to set to sell to.
Yanir Calisar (00:35:53):
And I think that like, for example, if you go back to the attribution part the most, the difficult part here is that most cases it’s like the solutions are like one size fits all. You build some attribution model and then you put it in the platform and then all your customers need to follow the model that you’ve designed. But in most cases, it’s not like this, every company has a different way that they’re looking at the attribution. So I think that this is what’s so genius in the in touch points because I’m just giving you the, the data, just do whatever you want with it. Yeah. and I’m not spending out of money and time on developing these graphs and dashboards. And I want to mention one idea that I really believe in. So today there are like gazillions of solutions in the marketing space and like it’s very difficult to be different from other solutions.
Yanir Calisar (00:36:56):
And I’m, I’m hearing about like so many new and very innovative solutions for marketeers. And I think that today the problem is that most of the solutions are in between two, two parts of this this, this industry. So one part is a very measurable solutions and these are solutions that will always be successful. For example, Google AdWords. So in Google ad words or Facebook ads you know how much money you put every month and you know how much money you make out of it. And it’s precise. Like you can precisely measure, measure the success of these solutions and this, these solutions, like as I see them, we’ll leave it for ever. Okay. It’s very easy to use them to justify them internally. The other side of this map is solutions that are kind of utility tools. So for example, no one pays or most of the people are not paying for Google analytics.
Yanir Calisar (00:38:03):
But if you will wake up in market tier and tell them you don’t have Google analytics anymore or just pay thousand dollars, so it will pay $1,000. And, but you must have Google analytics, you must have it once you install it, you can never take it out. People like, I know marketeers that will rather like prefer to cut their, their leg or something and not get rid of Google analytics. And it’s the same like Gmail or WhatsApp, I don’t know. These are our Salesforce like companies. If they lose Salesforce one day, the company can disappear. And I think, so this is the other side of the map. So measurable and utility. And I think that’s all the companies, all the solutions that are in between that are not very clear like where they are at. I think this will be very challenging for them to succeed over time.
Yanir Calisar (00:39:00):
Because first of all, there are too many companies in this gap. And second of all, it’s very, very difficult to justify it internally and to be able to pay for it. And like in the measure measurable part, the measurable side of the map. I think the big players like have most of the markets Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and then the utility tools. This is where you want to be like, be like small smarts, automated solutions and find good niche over there. So if you find good niche in this side you can build something and something that is very easy to explain and to see the added value, like that value is like to be able to help your end user to do his daily work better. That’s it. Google analytics, I must have it because it helps me do my work, like show results, show a reports and graphs. So this is the trick and find niche over there.
Sean Tierney (00:40:10):
So yeah. Okay. So I mean, so your process, it sounds like you, you basically have some conversations. You get some signal there from people that you talk to, you, you recognize what you think could be a problem. You ask them like, how much would you actually pay for this? And then very soon thereafter, create a quick prototype in 48 hours time box it and then actually go and try to immediately sell it to those folks who said, yeah, I’d pay you $1,000 a month for this. Yeah. Brilliant. Love it. So you weren’t clot, like you’re not trained in computer science, you just picked up Java script and my SQL and Java and all these languages on your own or how,
Yanir Calisar (00:40:45):
Yeah, so I’m the fellowshipping. I’m doing tech for the past 20 years. So now, since I was 14 years old and I did work for when I worked at Trinsic, I was part of the engineering team. And also in Marquetto, I worked a lot on the tech part. Yeah, don’t have any like official, you know I didn’t graduate computer science or something, but yeah, I, I’m doing it a lot and most of my very technological work is done by technical teams around the world that I hire. And I do have on Watson and Watson. I have six advisors. Great. I, half of them are on the growth side and the half on the product and the tech side. So they’re like doing hands on hands on work and they’re helping me with development of the product.
Sean Tierney (00:41:46):
Nice. Yeah, I mean, I think the average person, it’s a very unique background that you have to be able to both been exposed to all the business challenges, but also have the programming experience and the ability to implement on your own. And like you said, you are, you know, development and then sales and then support and you basically run the full gamut. So you kind of see the whole spectrum. You’re able to stay lean and mean just yourself, which is a really powerful thing. The average person, I think, I mean, do, can anyone learn to code?
Yanir Calisar (00:42:18):
So I have two parts. So first thing so first thing you don’t need to code if you’re not talented in life, if you don’t want to. I have, for example, a good friend of mine and he’s a partner of mine as well. That has a lot of great ideas of solutions that can be built. And whenever he has an idea, he just gets, he hires a team over a Fiverr or Upwork to develop it for him. So I, his most popular product was I think 10 years ago, so a, like we talked about UTM parameters and UTM tagging. So he thought to myself, why do I need to do it manually every time? And then he just gets a team in Ukraine to develop a Chrome extension that automatically like shows you some UI that’s just you, you put in the UTM source, UTM medium, et cetera.
Yanir Calisar (00:43:23):
And then it generates the link that you can use in your posts. So I, a few days after the, they went live with it, he tweeted Hey Google did you, did you saw my new a UTM tagging to, and surprisingly Google retreated them. And in a matter of hours they got like tens of thousands of downloads for this Chrome extension. So this is a great example because the guy doesn’t have any technical skills, but he managed to do like nice money out of it. So this is one, one part. So the other side although I am, I’m technical and I always think about how you can automate that stuff with code. I think that it doesn’t matter if you have the technical skills or not. You can, the thing is that you need to combine two spaces, two walls into a niche and you need to find the pain that you can solve in a easy way.
Yanir Calisar (00:44:32):
So I specifically, I never recommend to go and do like services because services, most cases can not like you. It’s very hard to scale them up. But like for example, I’ll give you a, actually this was an example that I did recommend a to do a services company. So I knew a girl in Israel that is working for a, it cannot be a consulting fear or it’s a consulting fear that is specializing in cannabis. So I asked her how many companies in Israel are there? And Israel is like a leader in cannabis, a world leader in cannabis and medical cannabis production. So she told me, yeah, today there are not many. So I told them, I told her, so why aren’t you like doing it freelance as a freelancer? Because like the big companies will pay through this big fear, but the smaller companies are not, are unable to pay a lot of money to get these kinds of consulting. So she told me, yeah, this is actually makes a lot of sense. So again, this is not with technology, but I think like getting these, these niche, this niche and just do this due diligence and see if like I told her, okay, now go and check how many companies, how many smaller cannabis companies are there in Israel and what they do today. So these days she’s talking this kind of a business in Israel. Yeah. So
Sean Tierney (00:46:13):
I think what’s interesting is like, so it’s funny, ironically I had a similar challenge in terms of attribution with UTM parameters. And by the way, UTM for the people listening is, I think it, it’s urgent. Something, but it’s basically, yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s basically a way to tracking module or something like that. Yeah. It’s, it’s the way that Google knows where someone came from. So if you can control the links that are coming into your site, you can specify these things like source and campaign and medium and whatnot. And then that allows you then to know what’s working. It’d be able to attribute and say, okay, like I’m spending money on social media or radio spots or whatever it is, and you can start to identify what’s paying off. So anyways, I had a similar challenge myself using gravity forms, which is a WordPress plugin.
Sean Tierney (00:46:59):
And it’s like, I just want to be able to cookie people when they hit the site and know that whenever they fill out a form, it’s going to grab their UTM parameters and submit that and store it with the lead and nothing like this existed. So same thing. Like I used to be a developer. I couldn’t write a line of code today to save my life, but I hired someone on Upwork, you know, 50 bucks, guy at Egypt built this plugin and I just opened sourced it, put it up there and I still to this day get the little Camtasia. You’re, you’re, your, your
Sean Tierney (00:47:30):
Video has been viewed too many times. It’s going to shut down now because it’s the little tutorial that I made on that thing that shows how it works. So I know that it’s getting a lot of usage and traffic and whatnot on get hub because it solves a problem that everyone else had. So I think Upwork and you know, for the, in the interest of helping people who are listening who aren’t technical and her trying to think, well, I’ve got this idea, how do I solve it? So hiring people on Upwork is certainly one way to outsource it. Like you said. I, I would say no code is blowing me away right now. I don’t know if you’ve played with it yet. Like what, what’s your experience with [inaudible]?
Yanir Calisar (00:48:03):
Ah, just a little bit, but I think, I think the day idea, the approach of like,
Yanir Calisar (00:48:13):
Not just before, before, like hiring like outsourcing your ideas again, just do a quick due diligence. I’m calling, I have a great, I woke up with a great idea. I’m just calling someone in this market and asking him about like, how much you will pay, not just about if it’s a cool idea or not. Are you willing to pay for it? And I’m usually starting my conversation. I must tell you about the new product that I’ve developed because like, I want to make it more a serious, like, so do you, do you need something like that? You want to see a demo? And then if I book a demo, like, okay, so sometimes as I said, it’s like very simple to develop. It’s like it takes a few days. I can already come up with a few slides and talk about the solution before I’m spending the money and the time and the efforts of developing the solution, just running a POC, like a dry POC without, before spending the time. Regarding no-code. Yeah. Again, it just
Yanir Calisar (00:49:20):
A great way to get
Yanir Calisar (00:49:24):
To stand in this 48 hours rule that I have of like getting to at first POC working POC in 48 minutes at 48 hours.
Yanir Calisar (00:49:36):
Yanir Calisar (00:49:36):
Before, before like
Yanir Calisar (00:49:39):
Diving into this
Sean Tierney (00:49:41):
Development. Yeah. I mean, the ultimate POC lean wise is mockups. Some screens you can even use a tool like envision, link them together, make a little clickable app that people can then use and try to sell that before you even have it. I mean, that’s the, that’s the leanest possible way to do this. I’m just blown away like in the last week, in seven days using a no-code tool. I did some research in this space and tinkered a bit. And then Tony, who was a mutual friend at the workspace turned me on to this thing called a [inaudible]. In the last seven days, I built the backend platform that I imagined for this charity makeover project that we’re doing. And it’s entirely custom. It’s entirely what we need. It, it’ll, it enables anyone to bring this whole event, you know, charity sponsorship, volunteer recruitment thing and do it their city, this thing, I just literally without a line of code, built it in seven days in my spare time while still working for Pagely. Like it is mind blowing what these no-code tools can do. And, and I just like, to me it’s the use of a developer is not best spent writing crud operations. The developer should be there to solve those really, you know, interesting edge case challenges that are hard and that are like the true meat of the app. But like just the UI and the nonsense scaffolding that you have to deal with at this point I think is completely solvable through no-code.
Yanir Calisar (00:51:01):
And I want to extend to that. So BOC is not something that you or did you only need to do at the beginning of a product that you were working on? So if I like when I started Watson, so the POC took me 48 hours. It was a very, very, very lean product. It has only like, I think 1% of what it has today. And I was able to sell it as ease like four days after I launched it for the first customer. But then the first customer that I had was amazing. It was an Israeli based Israel based company, small one, but very, very advanced and sophisticated. And they are using a lot of solutions and they are very proactive. Like they, we used to have a KOL almost on a daily basis. And they came up to me every time with great ideas telling me like, look, I have one agent, does that any, any, any chance you can add it somehow to the product?
Yanir Calisar (00:52:07):
And I said, yes. Okay, this is great. Like this does the POC for me. They are willing to pay for something for this specific feature. So today, like 95% of the product is based on customer inputs. And so today the Q is very, very long already. But yeah, for sure. I think like continuous POC like keep doing this small PLCs along the way. And this is how, like at the beginning I just thought Watson will be just like a small products that I can sell. I don’t know for $1 or $2 per user per seat, but then I realized that this can be a very, very robust products with many features but very you know, specific ones that are based on customer inputs, exactly what the customer wants. How do you go about pricing a higher dollar service like this?
Yanir Calisar (00:53:06):
How do you quantify how big the problem is to the customer? That they’re willing to pay you 1000 bucks a month instead of one or $2 a month? So B, because I said like my, most of my products are lean, so I usually like trying to I see what the competitors are or other solutions in the market and then like I’m trying to price it like 50% and, and less to like be able to grow Fest. There is not like, there are no real rules about that. And I think like three years ago when I started my first business over stuck IO. So I, I talked to a good friend of mine, guy and I, he was doing like a, you had an agency already for 10 years. And I asked them, how do you price your services? How do you decide how much to charge from each company?
Yanir Calisar (00:54:02):
So he told me like you just need to try. I mean, he told me in a boat one time that he asked for a 2000 to $100,000 for four project and they never heard back from the customer. So it doesn’t mean Hey, sometimes they will just say, okay and that’s great. Sometimes you will lose the customer. So I really believe in like starting with the range saying like where you are planning to, to, to get to. And then this is something that I’ve learned while I was doing sales
Yanir Calisar (00:54:45):
Like face to face sales like long time ago. And I learned that it doesn’t matter the product. It is what matters is how you wrap it. And if you make, it looks like it worth a lot of money and, or not a lot, but it’s worth them, the mind that you ask for. So companies will pay for it. I never charge very, very low prices because I don’t want like everyone to use it because then it will make me a lot of noise, a big rum noise. But, so I stayed at like keep it.
Yanir Calisar (00:55:21):
Yanir Calisar (00:55:24):
In the good range of prices. And are you so you’re able to support all this is a one man show you’re able to still make it all work and do that be doing development on a new product and supporting old products and like making all that work as one person? So I do have a small team of people that provide more support, like a backup. Because my products are zero touch, I’m always thinking about zero touch and or no touch our solutions. So yes but they have a big round backup team. And as I said, I don’t have UI for most of my platforms, so if a problem, a cure or something so it needs to just be fixed down in the background. The customer is a it seamless for the customer. If there is a problem, like a sink doesn’t work properly or I want to add something to the sink, like the customer doesn’t know about it. And it’s great because these are marketing people. They don’t want to touch technology. They have too many products and solutions that the trying to operate the same time. Of course if there is a problem or something, so I let them know, but most days is the product just running if they need some small tweaks that just being done in the background. Cool. Cool.
Sean Tierney (00:56:46):
All right, well we’ve been talking a lot about the guts of entrepreneurship and whatnot. I’m going to change gears here. You are from Tel Aviv, Israel, yes. Born and raised or what?
Yanir Calisar (00:56:56):
No. I was born in Mexico city. Okay. And after six months I we moved back to Israel. I’m Israeli, like my parents just been there for a few years. And yeah, now for the past seven years, I’m living in Tel Aviv. Recently I just left the center of the city. I needed some more quiet that it was in a bit noisy a city. So I needed that.
Sean Tierney (00:57:23):
I’ve never been, it’s very high. I’m very interested to visit Israel. Great time there. She knew [inaudible] scene over there. So that’s why I was gonna ask you is like, I’ve heard that the scene, the entrepreneurial scene in Tel Aviv is actually incredible and you guys have like a very strong investment community around it and it’s just very supportive. Can you speak about that at all? Yeah, sure.
Yanir Calisar (00:57:43):
So first of all seminar through a tau hub over here I’m working in a place called [inaudible] hub. So it’s a small coworking space over there close to where I live. And we have great community over there. Great facilities. And besides that, I think like there are a few dozens of coworking spaces instead of is relatively small city. So it’s very easy to find like a great place to work at. Besides that, they’re like accelerators. They are I think 15 places like we work and similar companies that opened the coworking spaces, which are bit more expensive, but the war because of the networking, especially if you are [inaudible] and, or you’re working by yourself. So I, it’s great. I used to work in one of the, we work spaces over there instead of here.
Yanir Calisar (00:58:46):
Besides that, I think that’s one of the most powerful things that we have in Israel. It’s a meet up scene and like there are always great meetups around, always great meetups in any, any, any topic that you can think of. So I specifically have a meetup for marketing people from marketing like more senior marketing, Mark and managers. I, it’s called the CMO confessions Tel Aviv. And like every few months are running like events in one of the local bars. We have great marketing people coming there. We have I think 2000 members in the group. Yeah. And besides that, most of the companies like the, the largest companies and the more like the sexy companies the Israeli companies are based in Delaware. So who are the other units? Ways actually, yeah. Ways. I don’t know where a guy based now we have weeks, we have ways we have Mobileye and then we have the Bula which now joined with Outbrain and yeah, we have great companies over there and
Yanir Calisar (01:00:12):
Yanir Calisar (01:00:13):
They are sponsoring a lot of meetups, so we can go ahead and like to one of these companies and for, for to hear to tend to meet up. Google also has their HQ, like an office over there in the center of the city. And they have the Google, the, the, the Google for startups Campos. And I’m working there every now and then.
Yanir Calisar (01:00:39):
Yanir Calisar (01:00:41):
And that’s it. Like that, the [inaudible], any person that you meet in Israel, like we always like we start the conversation by saying, brother, I’ll, why you like [inaudible] my Cola mania name. So it feels like a small and very a United community. So it’s very fun. And then you start like the next question is where you work at like what you do and then, ah, okay, you know, this guy and I almost worked there, so you must know this person. So it’s very, very fun. And I also, they are slowly starting to be more and more smaller communities in telophase. So for example, in the South there is a neighborhood called [inaudible] Shapiro neighborhood. So they have like, it’s almost cold living. You have like apartments that you can rent from them and then you get a coworking space and you have a GM and they are doing parties and the even ever at restaurants and bars. So if you are a community members, so you get everything almost, feel free. So this is very cool.
Sean Tierney (01:01:52):
Well it seems like one or the other. Yeah, those are all amazing components and I will definitely take you up on that offer. I, like I said, it’s very high on my list. You will get that beer on me and I’ll take you through the best homeless place over there. I am a homeless kind of sewer, so I will absolutely take you up on that. The other component that seems to me from what I understand is like typically when there’s an exit, like the ways folks, when they then become investors, you have this diaspora of, you know, folks who came into money who understand how to build
Yanir Calisar (01:02:20):
A company and who are now then, you know, turning that back in and incubating new founders and you kind of have, you get this nice like cyclical effect going on. Does it have much of that there? Like are the, are the, are the people who came out of exits now then starting to reinvest? Yes. I think besides them, the financial part of it, I think that’s getting like hearing the stories behind it from, you know, first source. Like I think two years ago I attended the meetup where ways the F the one of the co founders at ways was talking and telling the story about how they started. And it was fascinating. It’s, he told, like, he was telling about the fact that when they started, they didn’t have even one person over there that understands that knows how to operate maps because there are no maps in ways like the maps are being generated automatically dynamically by the users.
Yanir Calisar (01:03:22):
And this is very supper and one, one story that I like to to tell that I’ve heard from him. So the challenge that they had there is to know the number of the building if you think about it. So the maps are being generated automatically, but then if you’re trying to navigate to, I dunno these in street and number 55 so how would ways no to direct you to the right building. So then he said that they figure that there are like rules in every country. So we need to read it. For example, one side is a like odd or even or odd the other even. So in Israel for example one side of the suite is odd and the other side is even, so you would say that if the street starts at one and then, and a hundred, so it will be on the right side of the street, somewhere in the middle of the street.
Yanir Calisar (01:04:27):
And in the U S it’s easier because it’s blocks, right? You have a hundred to 200 and then 200 to triangle et cetera. And then in China it was impossible for them because in China, the first building in the street is the oldest one. So it’s a nightmare. So they just passed on that. In China, you cannot navigate to a specific building. I know, I don’t know if they changed it, but this is how it used to be. So again, this is, I think this is much more powerful and this is, it gives it, its inspires you because you hear these small stories and then when you do it by yourself and you’re going through these processes, you use all these experience that you acquired from listening to other entrepreneurs. Yeah. And arguably
Sean Tierney (01:05:18):
That’s more valuable than the cash that they have to invest is just that. [inaudible]
Yanir Calisar (01:05:22):
[Inaudible], You know, how do you even quantify having been through it and, yeah, I mean, of course, like getting a few millions for your startup. It’s a Kickstarter. It’s, it’s great start. I, I never raised like millions for my companies. And I think today I actually read the nautical recently about it. Today, more and more companies are trying to avoid raising mining, trying to run, bootstrap with their company because this is I think more sustainable way of building a company if you are running, if you’re chasing after like fundraising it just takes you off the focus of building a great and a sustainable company. If you’re running after making your customers a hippie gaining more and more customers building great product that actually solves pain painful problems. I think this is a great model of like building a company and this is what I’m trying to do. Yeah.
Sean Tierney (01:06:31):
100%. I, I did a company where we raised three quarters of a million friends and family and angel and then proceeded to go and do the Silicon Valley roadshow, met with 14 venture capitalists. Amazing. Well, it’s, you’re right though. It takes your eye off the ball of keeping your customers happy. And if that doesn’t work, then it doesn’t matter what money you’re raising. Like if you, if you screw that up then and you succeed in raising money, then it’s just basically kind of a, an inevitable that it will fail eventually. So
Yanir Calisar (01:06:58):
Any of the articles that I’ve read they mentioned like Uber and we will work. So these companies raised like tongs of money and then their mother wasn’t holding like water. It was just like, it’s great. We’re in the, we work. Of course they solve like very painful problems, but then building these companies a bit slower and focusing more on the added value to the customers. I think this is, this is, this is what counts. Yeah. Cool.
Sean Tierney (01:07:34):
Well we are just over the hour Mark. So I’ll start winding down here. I do wanna ask you one more question just because I happen to be wearing the shirt today, but I didn’t realize that Krav Maga, that’s a Israeli self-defense system. Do they, I didn’t even know. Yeah, I didn’t realize I was wearing it. And so then we were having the conversation. But so this is something, do you guys learn that? Like I understand like Israeli has mandatory military service. Everyone does the two years in it. Is that something like the whole society learns there or what’s the role of [inaudible]?
Yanir Calisar (01:08:04):
Yeah, we are learning it in the military, in the army in the military service. Yeah, everyone knows that were not very using it and data that they today we were very polite people.
Sean Tierney (01:08:22):
Maybe that’s why it’s so peaceful. Like, I took it for six months in the gym where I trained in Arizona, had a saying on the wall that was just like, so others may walk in peace and it’s like when you, when you have that skill then it’s kind of like there it is a lot more peaceful. And I’m just curious if, I mean, if you find that to be true there,
Yanir Calisar (01:08:41):
Yeah. Wait slots for useful in Israel, but I can tell you that again, every skill that you are having is a, is a great, is a great thing. I can tell you that’s when I had my first my first degree in the South. It was like my apartment was four kilometers from Gaza strip. So over there you are a bit more stressed. Especially in like times where it’s big, more dangerous. But yeah, it’s very quiet until [inaudible] people are living very peacefully.
Sean Tierney (01:09:25):
How so? I know Trump just revealed some grand middle Eastern strategy plan recently. I haven’t read it. I don’t know personally even what it involves, but like what’s your thoughts on how does the Gaza strip situation, Palestine, all that, how does that resolve?
Yanir Calisar (01:09:43):
I know that’s a big nodded question. I tell you. I’ll tell you my, a nonpolitical answer to that. Yes. Basically I think politic is very scramble these days in Israel. Like both old parties are like saying almost the same things. So it’s very hard to know which way you want to go. I can tell you that at the end of the day, like besides the Tel Aviv people which just work hard, like trying to enjoy their life as much as possible it’s very pricey to live in Telaviv. So like, we work more and more and more and we tried to innovate a lot and you’re trying to do great things and to improve our life and our friends and our family feminist life all the time. And I think that the venture did the end of the day. We just wanted the simple things of living together in peace, living quietly, enjoying life. And you know, we won’t, it doesn’t matter even the rights, right. 10 parties and the left hand parties and the center, we’re all one piece and be quiet like like start to squad that will EV that everyone will be happy with. So I know this is a bit vague, but I think this is, this is the main thing. We don’t want to fight anyone. We don’t want to make harm to anyone. And and hopefully
Sean Tierney (01:11:29):
We’ll get through it. Yeah. Hopefully. Yeah. Hopefully the other day other people feel the same way. Yeah. All right. Well let’s dig into, we got one last part here where we talked through basically like a rapid fire kind of question around, it’s called the breakdown. So are you ready for the breakdown? Yes. Breakdown baby. All right. What is one book that has profoundly affected you?
Yanir Calisar (01:11:52):
Yanir Calisar (01:11:53):
My favorite book is the Alchemist.
Sean Tierney (01:11:56):
Ditto. That’s my favorite book. I’ve read it like a five times, including one of them in English and one of them in Spanish. I tried to in Spanish was difficult, but I knew the story. So I’d give me a STEM. Sorry. This is, I took yours. Paulo Coelho, very, very near and dear to my heart. What is one person you love to have dinner with? Could be living or dead. Doesn’t matter.
Yanir Calisar (01:12:23):
Yanir Calisar (01:12:24):
You don’t Musk Elon Musk. Yeah. Yup. Cool. [inaudible] on my skin. Ah, I think that the way that the thinks, like even for example the example where they troll
Yanir Calisar (01:12:40):
Rocks on is a new Jeep. But did you see it? I need the new Tesla. He said that the windows would never break. There is nothing that can break a on the windows of this Jeep. So they trolled blocks or something going these rocks on, on the windows and they broke up. So he like went on a PR like a on a press release and just said yeah, he was wearing a tee shirt with the broken window. So it just took its and like turned it into something positive. Like, here we are laughing about ourself. This, this was the original plan. But the way of like, Oh, you take something bad and turns it into something. Great. I love this approach and I think like I’m tracking everything, almost everything he does. And yeah, I kind of admire him. I know. It’s like,
Sean Tierney (01:13:41):
Have you read his book? No. That’s read that. I know one is amazing. Yeah. Just a, to have the goals that that guy does when he operates. He’s not thinking about I’m going to build this company and make money. He’s thinking like, how do I improve the survivability of the human species by making us interplanetary and not dependent on coal? And like he’s just thinking it’s such an incredible level that
Yanir Calisar (01:14:05):
Yeah, this is the way he thinks. Like not what he builds. Not like I always succeeding or failing with companies and the way things I think also if I’m allowed Mark Ben Salesforce CEO also I think I recently read a few articles about like interviews that they gave the way things, the way he sees the echo system and other companies. I always sees a Facebook, for example. I find it very aligned with the way, like, I think we are a I see some of the things done in the same eyes as him. And I’ve read Jeff the book of a, about Jeff Bezos. I recently both Amazon, how they started. So very inspiring. This small it’s called a small S smart shop or something like that.
Sean Tierney (01:15:09):
Small smart shop. Okay. We’ll link that one in the show notes. What about, what is one tool or hack that saves you time, money, or headaches?
Yanir Calisar (01:15:22):
I guess everyone will say Integro motto was up here. Let me think about something else.
Yanir Calisar (01:15:28):
Yanir Calisar (01:15:34):
Sean Tierney (01:16:02):
Yanir Calisar (01:16:37):
So I have a surprising answer for this one. So when I was six years old, my parents took me to the local music school. And the manager there asked me, what do I need to, what do I want to play on? So me as a six years old got boy. I told them I want a violin. So until today, my parents deny that, but I think that they just behind my back. Like I’m told him, no way. These guys gonna play a violin at our house. So the manager told me, you and all violin, it’s a bit difficult to start with. Maybe you should start with piano and then go to violin. So I said, okay. And then to today I’m playing a piano. And then six months ago I decided to, one day I just woke up and I just went and bought it a violin and I started playing. It’s amazing instrument. I really love it. So I you recently listen to more and more like violin music. So I don’t have anything specific Tchaikovsky maybe. Cool. but yeah. All right. We’ll link to some Tchaikovsky in the show notes. What is one important truth that very few people agree with you on?
Yanir Calisar (01:18:07):
Yanir Calisar (01:18:07):
So I have a, it’s kind of a mantra
Yanir Calisar (01:18:11):
That makes me do most of the stuff like that I’m expected. Stuff that I’m doing is that I always say that these are the best years of my life. And I’m saying it for the past like 10 years. So whenever, like, I don’t know, I, I need to go to the gym and I don’t want to, so I just think, okay, these are the best areas of my life. If now I won’t do it. So when we like and then if I’m trying to convince my friends to do something so it became a joke already. It’s, these are the best years of your life. Come on, you must come with me to this party or you must go with me to do something to the restaurant or something. So the best years of your life doesn’t mean that all that you just say to yourself every day and then just get up and do whatever.
Yanir Calisar (01:19:04):
Whatever you want to do. Now you’re not getting any younger. So yeah. Don’t like the mind of like, it might be the last day overlay, live, blah, blah. I mean, now, okay. But now it happens. Like these are the best years of your life. Cool. So I love, there’s a quote from Steve jobs in his Stanford commencement address where he’s talking about like how he evaluates his, his lens for viewing. Like if he needs to change something, he says like every day I wake up, I look in the mirror and if I ask myself the question, if this was the last day I was living, would I want to be doing what I’m going to do today? And if he answers no too many days in a row, then he changes something. I think it’s very similar kind of lens to view things through.
Yanir Calisar (01:19:46):
Yanir Calisar (01:19:47):
Yeah. There is another technique that I used to use when I’m doing, I was doing a face to face sales. Like the end of the day when I put my hand on the, on the pillow, like asking myself if I’ve done the a hundred percent, if I took it like I use 100% of the time today and if not, so just get up, do some something and then go back to sleep.
Yanir Calisar (01:20:15):
Sean Tierney (01:20:16):
I was happy that they didn’t happen so many times. Cool. All right. Last question here, if you had a time machine to go back to your former 20 year old self, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Yanir Calisar (01:20:32):
Yanir Calisar (01:20:33):
So this is something that I learn. I’ve learned a bit after the military service in the hard way.
Yanir Calisar (01:20:41):
Yanir Calisar (01:20:42):
To always be like,
Yanir Calisar (01:20:45):
Yanir Calisar (01:20:46):
When you make hard decisions or you make a very important decision, you should always make the, the choice that you are, that you feel that is the most, the right one at the moment. And given the circumstances, given the, given everything that you know at the moment because later, like few years later when you’re looking back, it’s very easy that way to say I was right because the situation that I was at this specific moment, this was the right choice. And the second part of it is to always make the decision like in the shortest time that you can. Like if you just thought to think about it and think about it. And so just some things you will never do it. Like when you have an idea, when you have something you want to do, when you have something you want to change, give it a deadline, like few days and then after this deadline, that’s it. You make the decision if it’s good or bad, that’s it. But you’re taking everything you know at that moment into consideration and make the decision.
Sean Tierney (01:22:05):
Yeah. And, and you’re that kind of living proof in terms of your approach with the two day proof of concept and really living that.
Yanir Calisar (01:22:11):
Really just if I, if I may one story about this, this part. So when I traveled in South America many years ago, like 10 years ago I used to, I traveled by myself, I traveled by myself and like it was very scary. It was the first time of me traveling in the world by myself. I didn’t know the language. Like I started in Brazil so I didn’t know Portuguese and I didn’t know where going into it was like dark, completely dark. And then I learned with the time over there that nothing there is like the, the chances that something bad will happen
Sean Tierney (01:22:56):
Are super, super, super small, very super, super, super low.
Yanir Calisar (01:23:01):
And then the mantra that they had this trip was that even if something bad will happen, I don’t know, I got, I get robbed or something. This would be the day that I remember in the trip. And sometimes like these bad things change the way your life are going. Like these leaves, something that changes you. And this, I, I slowly started to be trialed by this thought. Like and I think that sometimes, like one time I traveled with four guys from Israel that I met over there and we were looking for hotels. It was like late night already and most of the hotels were fully booked. And then they told like, they started panic, like what will we do? And I told them, look, eventually we will find somewhere to place [inaudible]. Eventually we will find someplace to stay. But if not, this will be a story.
Yanir Calisar (01:24:05):
This is what the night that we will remember is this night that we walked the whole night and then eventually we just were slipping on a, I dunno, in the street. And this is something that you remember for the rest of your life when you thought, when you tell someone about your a South America trip, you will tell about this night that you were sleeping on the street. And this is something that I took, like when I started my business, I told him as if, what will, what is the worst case scenario? I’ll lose all of my mind and when I’m 30 years old, okay, bomber, but this is the bed that it can get. And I think this is what drives me in many decisions that I’m taking.
Sean Tierney (01:24:47):
One of the previous guests to you, Julia sham two guests ago talked about fear setting. And this is something that Tim Ferris advocates where it’s basically you’re imagining the worst possible case scenario and that once you can be okay with like that’s the worst, then it kind of immunizes you from all this irrational fear that is just kind of gunk when you just like go there and it’s what’s funny, there’s also, I have a similar story traveling 20 years ago in Ecuador in a group of us was going to the beach total snafu. We ended up like riding in a dump truck and like the Broan was rot washed out. We got there like because the bus couldn’t pass a road that was washed out. We had to like the getting this back of this dump truck and we like didn’t get to the beach and time we got to this little town and everything was closed. There was nothing, there was no hotels, there was nobody there. Everyone was asleep and we’re like, Frick, where do we like we’re going to be homeless. We’re literally me sleeping on the streets. We ended up sleeping in like an ATM booth. Six of us crowded in, right? Sure enough. That’s what I remember. Yeah. That’s what we remember the whole trip. You know,
Yanir Calisar (01:25:50):
That’s it. It’s amazing. This is how you acquire new experiences, how you’re like having a adventures while you are traveling and in general, whatever you do. Yeah.
Sean Tierney (01:26:01):
Awesome. Well I think this is probably a place to wrap it up.
Yanir Calisar (01:26:04):
You’re near, if people listening want to get ahold of you or they want to follow you or use your product, where do we send them? So first of all, a, if you a Salesforce customers, I don’t know how many of you are using Salesforce, but you’re welcome to a checkout a Watley. What’s the.com? If you are in marketing and you need some challenges some help with some of your challenges or you want someone to solve your painful your, your pain points. So you can check out overstock IO. And you can follow me on Twitter. [inaudible], C. L. S. R. Awesome. Cool. And the show notes for this episode. I have a feeling are you going to be extremely long? We talked about a lot of different acronyms and products and whatnot. So all of that stuff will be for the people listening. It will be on the episode, so you can go back and find all the links to this stuff. And you know, it’s been such a pleasure, man. Thanks. I got to do this. That’s great. Cheers.