We were in college when we decided to start a company. At that time, it didn’t matter what type of company, the condition was that it had to be software-related. We just wanted to get started, onboard clients, get amazing reviews and make some money.
Results slowly appeared, we were building landing pages, e-commerce websites and a couple of custom CMSs. Our work was OKAY, but we hadn’t yet understood the key of every project: Adding value to the client.
It was not until a big project knocked on our door that we realized that coding was not enough to build good software. Unfortunately, we learned the hard way. The project’s results were a complete disaster - After 6 months of development, we showed the product to the client and this is what happened…
It turns out we hadn’t understood what our client wanted (he hadn't understood it either, but it was our job to help him find out the correct product to build). We succeeded in building the product right, but we weren’t building the right product.
Of course, I’m not going to deeply explain the reasons of the failure, but as a summary: Null design, null product discovery, null UX, null user testing, null design thinking, null everything. Merely development.
THIS WAS OUR TIPPING POINT.
We decided to take a break from projects and focus on defining what we wanted. We started learning new concepts, not only about programming, but about how to make business-oriented software products. We onboarded people who could help us build Successful Digital Products That People Love to Use - This was our motto.
Important disclaimer: What you are is totally different to how you sell it. First, define yourself, then figure out how to market it.
This is when Light-it started being a Product Development Studio, a place where software is just one more player (a very important one) in a team. In order to achieve our motto, we needed designers, project managers, UX experts, marketing & content specialists, and more.
This action - stopping being a software factory - was the key to improvement. However, this is an endless process in which we are constantly asking questions to ourselves about how we can add more value to clients. Is it focusing more on UX? Or maybe Data-driven project management? Why not growth hacking? There is not a right answer. It works the same way product validation does - Trying new things, doing PoCs, testing with users (clients in this case), and many, many more..
The one thing that is clear to us, is that we have to keep moving, enhancing innovation, thinking out of the box, and the most important: Enjoying The Process.