Founder Series - CoinTracker
Monolist's Founder Series is a blog series interviewing Silicon Valley startup founders about how they and their teams stay organized and productive.
Can you tell us who you are, and what you're currently working on?
I'm Chandan, Co-Founder of CoinTracker along with Jon Lerner. CoinTracker is a portfolio & tax manager for cryptocurrency. CoinTracker automatically syncs transaction history from all your crypto wallets and exchanges, presents your holdings & performance in a unified dashboard, and enables you to calculate your crypto taxes. We are currently tracking 50,000+ connected exchange accounts with over $300M of crypto-assets.
What brought you to working on this specific problem?
Jon and I used to work at Google together. We were both hobbyist cryptocurrency investors and ran into the pain point of keeping track of our own assets. We didn't have a clue what our cost basis was for our crypto-investments (let alone how much money we had invested into cryptocurrency!). Figuring out how we were going to do our cryptotaxes wasn't even on the radar because we didn't even know how much of each asset we were holding.
So basically, we started working on CoinTracker out of a personal pain point of tracking our own crypto-investments.
What apps or tools are you using to stay productive? Can you describe how you're using them?
Inbox by Gmail — For general communication internally and externally.
Google Hangouts — For internal communication on urgent matters.
Slack — For communication with contractors we work with.
Asana — For internal task tracking.
Intercom — For customer support with users.
Had you experienced any pain points or learned any lessons that lead to your current system?
We tried a bunch of different tools along the way that led to where we are today. We are pretty pragmatic about our tooling: we'll do the simplest scrappiest thing until it breaks/stops working, and then try new solutions until something works. When the tools are working, we don't think about them and they fade into the background (that's when you know it's working!).
For example, we started by doing everything on email but then it was hard to prioritize tasks and filter out the important tasks from noise. Also anyone can access your inbox, so we needed a space that we could control ourselves. We tried various tools like Trello, but eventually settled on Asana because they had a free version we could try and it worked well for us (we are now on a paid tier).
We were doing all customer service on email for a while, but when we started having thousands of users messaging us, we couldn't keep up anymore, so we explored customer service comms platforms, and eventually landed on Intercom due to their easy to use product and Y Combinator discount.
Do you have any other tips about staying organized and productive for founders?
The best guide I have found on this is here (see especially Part II).