Startup Life

Smooth Sailing: How to Keep Your Startup Afloat [Infographic]

By Ivan Serrano   December 17, 2014

sailboat

If you work at a startup like SpareFoot, you might have heard people toss around the word “scalable.” But what does it actually mean?

In simple terms, “scalable” refers to the potential for a business to become a market leader and to bolster its revenue at a comparatively small cost. You might think you’ve got the next big idea, but unless you’ve planned for growth, you’ll wind up struggling to meet increased demand from customers. → Keep Reading

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How CEO Chuck Gordon Pumps Up the Award-Winning Culture at SpareFoot

By John Egan   November 19, 2014

chuck-gordon-sparefoot

For two years in a row, SpareFoot has been named among Austin’s best employers in the Austin American-Statesman’s Top Workplaces program. And for two years in a row, co-founder and CEO Chuck Gordon has been singled out by the program to receive a special award for leadership.

It’s no coincidence that SpareFoot and our CEO have been recognized in 2013 and 2014 by the Top Workplaces program. When it comes to fostering a top-quality workplace culture, SpareFoot and Chuck Gordon go hand-in-hand. → Keep Reading

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Yes We Can! SpareFoot Launches Food Drive

By John Egan   November 7, 2014

Albert Hood David Berns

At SpareFoot, we’re fortunate enough to have chefs prepare lunch for us every day. In addition, we’ve got an assortment of snacks to nibble on. We’re a well-fed bunch.

But we wouldn’t have to travel far outside our offices in downtown Austin, TX, to find people who are much less fortunate than we are when it comes to food—people who struggle every day to feed themselves and their families.

As Thanksgiving approaches, we at SpareFoot are expressing thanks for our good fortune by organizing a food drive for the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas. We’re calling it the SpareFoot CANpaign. From Nov. 10 through Nov. 21, we’ll be collecting canned and nonperishable food, and then donating it to the food bank. Or if someone doesn’t want to lug cans of food to work, we’re enabling SpareFeet to make online monetary donations to the food bank. → Keep Reading

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SpareFoot Band Drums Up Enthusiastic Support at Battle of the Tech Bands

By John Egan   October 28, 2014

SpareFoot Band

With only half a dozen practice sessions under their belts, the seven members of the SpareFoot Band recently took the stage at The Mohawk, a music venue in Austin, TX. The bandmates had just 15 minutes to wow the crowd during the Austin Technology Council’s Battle of the Tech Bands. → Keep Reading

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SpareFoot’s Account Management Team Zeroes In On Facility Profitability

By John Egan   October 23, 2014

Cara Scott Amanda Ferguson

At SpareFoot, Amanda Ferguson’s and Cara Scott’s everyday mission is simple: Help our self-storage facility clients make more money. In other words, they’re our in-house consultants for facility profitability.

“There’s a lot of ways we do this—from focusing on performance-related metrics to ensuring our clients understand all of the products and partnerships we offer,” Ferguson said.

Ferguson and Scott make up SpareFoot’s Account Management Team, which aims to optimize listings for many of the facilities on SpareFoot’s self-storage network. Our facility clients might see Ferguson and Scott at various self-storage trade shows around the U.S., such as the upcoming Texas Self Storage Association conference in Fort Worth. → Keep Reading

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SpareFoot Gears Up for Austin Startup Week

By John Egan   September 24, 2014

texas state capitol

Some of the people at SpareFoot won’t have much spare time during the upcoming Austin Startup Week. → Keep Reading

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Want a Better Blog? Follow These 4 SEO Tips for Startups

By John Egan   September 9, 2014

Search Engine Optimization

Last year, digital marketing expert Kevin Ekmark surveyed his peers to get their take on the digital marketing landscape. One highlight from Ekmark’s survey: SEO is not dead. In fact, he said, the quality of your entire Internet presence—blog posts, website design, social media and so on—matters more than ever. After all, Google is constantly watching.

“Don’t skip over the basics of optimizing your site,” Ekmark wrote. → Keep Reading

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How Improv Can Improve Your Workplace

By John Egan   September 2, 2014

Amy Poehler

When you think of the word “improv,” your mind might flash back to hilarious performances by funny folks like Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler (pictured above). But while improv can tickle your funny bone, it also can improve the more serious business of getting work done.

Three SpareFoot employees—Jake Millward, Tevis Paxton and Nathan Sowell—have tapped into the power of improv. When they’re not at SpareFoot, you might find one or all three of these guys trying to elicit laughs from audiences at improv comedy shows in Austin, TX. In a nutshell, improv performers take the stage without a safety net; their unscripted dialogue is concocted on the fly. Improv is short for improvisation.

Off-stage, improv can boost communication, productivity and other facets of a workplace, SpareFoot’s improv pros say. → Keep Reading

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Four SpareFeet Get to Spring Into Action as Guest Chefs

By John Egan   August 4, 2014

Lily Youn

When Lily Youn arrived the morning of July 30 at SpareFoot’s off-site kitchen in Austin, TX, she was bracing for a Gordon Ramsay-style, hot-under-the-collar, screaming-at-the-top-of-your-lungs nightmare. Instead, she was treated to reggae music playing in the background, small talk from the assembled chefs—and bushels of fun but hard work. Definitely not a scene from Ramsay’s “Hell’s Kitchen.”

Youn (pictured at top), a member of SpareFoot’s Amazing Customer Experience (ACE) Team, was one of four SpareFeet who earned the privilege to work as “chef for a day” at our company after winning an in-house contest. At a June 25 cooking class taught by SpareFoot’s chief chef, Ari Dvorin, four two-member teams were assigned the task of concocting a dish from “mystery” vegetables, protein and up to five other ingredients. Two teams tied to claim victory. → Keep Reading

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Chris Garrett: A Customer Service Superhero at SpareFoot

By John Egan   July 29, 2014

ACE Team at SpareFoot

It wouldn’t be a stretch, and actually would be pretty appropriate, to proclaim Chris Garrett as a customer service superhero.

Garrett, a full-time member of SpareFoot’s Amazing Customer Experience (ACE) Team and a part-time comic-book creator, recently won an in-house contest to recognize the delivery of an amazing customer experience. SpareFoot judges reviewed phone calls from storage-seeking customers that were answered by ACE Team members. A call taken by Garrett (at left in top picture with SpareFoot’s Josh Lipton) was declared the winner. → Keep Reading

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