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When Alex Krug was an executive at Behance, he noticed that quite a few tools had been developed to help encourage signups and onboard customers, but once they were working with the product, there was very little help offered. This was a problem he thought he could help solve, which is why he founded Baton. Today, as the founder and CEO of Baton, Alex is helping people streamline their actual workflow with automation and on this episode of IT Visionaries, he explains exactly what that looks like. Plus, he dives into his entrepreneurial journey and what it means to grow a company. Like so many startups, the idea for Baton stemmed from a pain point that founder and CEO Alex Krug experienced first-hand. During his days as an executive with Behance, which was later sold and acquired by creative giant Adobe, workflow.
- Ouch! That Hurts!: When you’re looking to help companies scale, you need to identify their pain points. Understand the problems that are preventing them from growing. Don’t just throw more people at a problem in order fix-it. Think it through and fully understand the solution. Once you understand those problems, you can help that company grow.
- Post-game: A lot of platforms are built to onboard clients and geared toward customer retention. Baton is designed to streamline the post-sale process to help companies automate and streamline their workflows.
- The A-Team: When attempting to grow a company, employee retention is of the utmost most important. If you can keep a team together long enough to see your original mission through, you’re on a pathway to success.
For a more in-depth look at this episode, check out the article below.
When Alex Krug was an executive at Behance, he noticed that quite a few tools had been developed to help encourage signups and help onboard customers, but, once they were working with the product, there was very little help offered. This was a problem he thought he could help solve, which is why he founded Baton. Today, as the founder and CEO of Baton, Alex is helping people streamline their actual workflow with automation and on this episode of IT Visionaries, he explains exactly what that looks like
Much like Baton’s mission, Krug has always been about making things simpler and easier. That mission goes back to his days at Behance, where he was working to help creatives all over the globe get noticed.
“I joined Behance when we were only a handful of folks, and at the time Behance was a bootstrap company and really on this mission to empower the creative world,” he said. “In the early days, we were figuring out how to serve the community and we learned a lot. Creatives by nature are really great self promoters. So we had to figure out within the platform how to make it easy for them how to showcase value very quickly, and to be discovered by folks that aren’t already in their network.”
Behance is a social media platform designed to showcase and discover creative work. The mission behind the platform is to provide a place for learning and networking, while helping consumers find artists for projects.
“Creatives are really good at talking to their friends, their parents, the people in their immediate network about what they’re up to, but this idea of selling their creativity never feels natural,” Krug said. “We struggled with that idea early, but I think we figured out a unique way to do it. We would get their images, we would upload them to Behance and showcase [their work] in an ideal format and how the platform would really serve them. Just take the heavy lifting and the burden off the individuals.”
While helping creatives solve one pain point, Krug began to notice another that had been festering beneath the surface. As Behance began to onboard new clients, Krug began to notice that while there were systems in place to help your clients with project management tools, spreadsheets and email, there were never dedicated systems in place to help them when it came to implementation post-sale. That’s where Baton comes in.
“I saw my entrepreneurial friends throwing bodies at problems,” he said. “The issue is when you throw bodies at these problems, the solution actually hinders the scale and causes inefficient growth and causes high-burn growth. So Baton was really born out of that observation and pain. How can companies scale core functions like implementation that they can’t live without, but without bloating the team and or organization?”
According to Krug, most companies have a hacked-together solution that does not serve the consumers’ needs once the platform is live. So Krug and his team went to work to build such a solution.
To help build the platform, Krug and his team formed a task force built around the idea of gaining as much insight into a company’s problems as possible. So they set out to interview top C-level executives to understand how the platform should be built.
“Software is eating the world,” Krug said. “So before we even started Baton, or put any code down, we interviewed over a hundred startup execs, and we really heard these problems time and time again.
“Another way to think about it is as an org collaboration tool that provides a level of accountability management and transparency for all parties involved that has never existed before. Our clients can share status updates with one click of a button on a Zoom call with everybody. They can see where things are going to be late. They can see what’s holding it up, who is responsible and what they can do.”
As Krug sets out on his new adventure, one of his main goals is to keep the current team at Baton intact because one of the biggest lessons he has learned along the way is the importance of retaining talent.
To hear more about Baton’s mission and Krug’s entrepreneurial journey, checkout the full episode of IT Visionaries.
To hear the entire discussion, tune into IT Visionaries here.