By allowing our contracted call representatives to make money on demand and make calls from wherever, whenever and for however long they want, we get more engaged, highly motivated call representatives. Calltend is the new generation of call centers!
Location: Austin, Texas
Product / Service Offering: Distributed, outsourced customer service and sales solution
Co-founder Interviewed: Mike Chang
Other Key Management Team Members: Dean Stavropoulos, Paul Stavropoulos, Nick Thomas, Hailey Tyler, Chelsea Marshall
This article is part of our Business Startup Spotlight series featuring entrepreneurs and their companies. We hope that these founders’ interviews will inspire and motivate you as you undertake your own entrepreneurial journey.
Tell us a little about yourself with a focus on what motivates you.
I am a 24 year old co-founder of a startup looking to make a major impact on the world. I started my professional career in 2012 in the real estate industry, hoping to make money. My journey took me to working on a top 1% producing real estate team in the world ($100,000,000 in sales volume/year). I then headed growth at a real estate lead generation company where I took the company from $14,000 monthly recurring revenue to $250,000 MRR in 10 months.
It took me 5 years to realize life is not about money. Life is about making an impact, finding critical problems in the world and solving them. I have found a problem to solve, and I want to make an impact on the world.
When did you establish your company, and where did the idea originate?
We established Calltend in February 2017. The idea originated from problems that I found while creating call centers.
What need or needs does your company seek to fill for its customers?
We provide higher quality customer service and sales on both inbound and outbound calls. Calltend is a distributed, outsourced customer service and sales solution. We allow callers across the globe to make calls from wherever they are without the need to be at a call center. Representatives can call when they want for as long as they want, resulting in higher output.
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What is the one thing that sets your company apart from its competitors?
Our team, technology, processes and systems set us apart from our competitors. By allowing our contracted call representatives to make money on demand and make calls from wherever, whenever and for however long they want, we get more engaged, highly motivated call representatives.
This model also allows us to break down borders and use the entire world as a recruiting ground. This gives us access to an exponentially scalable workforce. We ensure quality through our dynamic payment model. “Calltenders” who perform at a high level get paid more per lead than representatives who convert at lower rates or provide customers with poor experiences. We also ensure quality through our automated online learning management system. This system comes equipped with tests, quizzes and assignments that provide us with over 200 data points to analyze whether we allow a call representative to log into our platform and start making money.
What was the biggest challenge you faced while getting your company up and running? How did you overcome it?
Recruiting the best people! I believe to build the best businesses that can impact millions, you need the best people. It is hard for startups to compete with the Google, Facebook and Ubers of the world. We have overcome this by properly articulating our big vision and utilizing our networks. Our most recent hire is a Harvard graduate who recently worked for Microsoft and Palantir.
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What resources have you utilized that other founders might find compelling or useful?
Calltend uses Angel List for recruiting.
What steps have you taken to secure funding for your company, and what, if anything, would you do differently if you had to start over?
Approach it like sales. Know where everyone sits in the sales funnel.
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What questions have you had as an entrepreneur of a fledgling startup that you had a particularly hard time finding the answers to?
I realize every question has multiple correct answers. As a founder, it is your job to parse the advice you get and find the answer that is most applicable to your business.
What challenges, if any, are you grappling with?
Having an exponentially large sales funnel for recruiting the world’s best talent is the greatest challenge now.
Is there anything else you would like to share about your company?
We will eliminate call centers. We are the new generation of call centers!
Are you familiar with other startups you believe should be spotlighted? If so, we would like to hear from you. Tell us about them in the comments below!