Chuck Hattemer, co-founder of OneRent, was our featured attendee this morning in Sunnyvale. Here is the handout from his briefing on bootstrapping OneRent.

Jan-17-2017 Bootstrapper Breakfast in Sunnyvale

Featured Attendee: Charles Hattemer of OneRent shares lessons learned pivoting and scaling OneRent

Chuck Hattemer started OneRent in March of 2014 while he was finishing up his business degree at Santa Clara University. Initially launched as a listing platform that helped facilitate the leasing process for college students, the team pivoted to an on-demand property management service for rental owners and tenants. Chuck will share lessons learned in the last two years as the firm has grown to manage more a thousand homes in 75 cities.

OneRentChuck Hattemer on Bootstrapping OneRent: Scaling in Chaos

Here are five key takeaways from working to scale Onerent.co in the business of technology-enabled full-service property management. In my experience, one of the greatest challenges is managing chaos in the initial stage of building your product, company, and team. Chaos is what ultimately gets you your first customer and what creates resilient organizational structure and culture early on.

  1. Start Executing: Be Comfortable with Chaos
    • Don’t even think about raising money
    • Break routines, habit, relationships
    • Prototype quickly
    • Hack together product demo
  2. Find Your First Customer: Make One Bad Deal
    • Use prototype to pitch/demo
    • Listen to need, adapt quickly
    • Make sure they pay something
    • Give deal but work next to them
  3. Track Everything: Store Clean Data
    • Define your key metrics early on
    • Create financial models for projections
    • Reduce number of tools
    • Track sales data first
  4. Document Strategy: Out of Chaos Comes Order
    • Analyze the past to find successes
    • Use Agile Planning (Kanban)
    • Breakdown success into tangible tasks
    • Put success stories on paper
  5. Define Culture: As Important as Ever
    • Hire with committees, get only the best
    • Educate your team repeatedly
    • Consistent Interviewing and grading
    • Create fail-friendly culture

Chuck Hattemer’s Handout as PDF