In a recent episode of the Bright Founders Talk podcast, Chris sits down with Ricardo Fayet, the Co-Founder of Reedsy, a platform that revolutionizes the self-publishing industry. Ricardo, who hails from Spain, speaks about his morning rituals, his passion for outdoor activities, and his love for fiction.
Residing in the scenic Ibiza, he often finds solace in paddleboarding and biking, seeking inspiration outside of non-fiction literature. Throughout the interview, Fayet provides intriguing insights into his experiences navigating the cultural nuances of doing business in different European cities.
Whether he’s reminiscing about adjusting to British indirectness or discussing the distributed nature of Reedsy’s team, his perspective offers a fresh look into the world of international startups. Dive in to learn more about the journey of this innovative entrepreneur and the challenges and triumphs of bridging cultural divides.
Ricardo Fayet’s Sunrise Secrets: From Morning Rituals to Bridging Business Borders
Ricardo’s mornings are a blend of the simplistic and the introspective. He’s no early bird, mind you. Instead, he relishes those golden moments before work, either taking a walk with his four-legged buddy or nursing an espresso while diving into a book. It’s these intimate details that paint a fuller picture of the man behind the tech powerhouse. “A good 20-30 minutes of not working before starting the day are important for me,” Ricardo quips. It’s a reminder that in the grind of innovation and entrepreneurship, taking a moment to just breathe can be the secret sauce.
Jet-setting from Madrid to Paris, then on to London, Ricardo’s journey has been as varied as it has been enlightening. His days in London were especially eye-opening. While starting up in a new country brought its fair share of challenges, the cultural nuances were what really took him by surprise. It wasn’t just about the different accents or the side of the road they drive on, it was the subtleties in communication. Like learning that the British “it’s not too bad” is far from a compliment. It’s these tiny, fascinating revelations that keep the journey of doing business internationally intriguing.
But here’s where it gets even more interesting. Reedsy, the company he co-founded, is a melting pot of cultures. Picture this: a distributed team, scattered across continents, each bringing their unique perspectives to the table. It’s like a daily lesson in global diplomacy. Despite the initial cultural shockwaves in Britain, Ricardo champions the blend of diverse voices and viewpoints. Because at the end of the day, it’s these varied experiences that make the business journey not just profitable, but also profoundly enriching.
Ricardo’s Publishing Paradigm: Shifting from Traditional to Trailblazing
In the bustling heart of London, where the echoes of Big Ben intertwine with the buzz of city life, Ricardo’s business thrived. Brexit? Merely a ripple in the vast ocean of their journey. The company was established with a European backbone, reaping grants from the European Union. But as the winds of change swept Britain, the team at Reedsy also pondered new horizons. “We were already considering leaving London,” Ricardo shared, highlighting that even though their global nature insulated them from Brexit’s bureaucratic snags, the decision left a mark on personal sentiments.
Rewind a little. University corridors, the lingering smell of textbooks, and young minds brimming with dreams. While Ricardo’s focus was a Masters of Science in Management, it was entrepreneurship that really caught his fancy. And then, in the midst of academia, Reedsy was born. It wasn’t just another business idea from a business school, but a game changer. Inspired by a friend’s trip to Canada and the rise of freelance platforms, the idea was golden: a marketplace dedicated to the self-publishing world, catering to everything from cover designs to marketing.
But, where does this leave traditional publishing? Is it a relic of the past or simply another road to take? Ricardo believes it’s a mix. Traditional publishing might have its limitations, but it’s far from extinction. In fact, it might just be adapting to the new wave, collaborating with self-published authors, blending the old and new. It’s a dance of evolution, and Ricardo’s Reedsy is leading the choreography.
Ricardo’s Recipe for Remote Success: Trust, Team Retreats, and Taking Chances
Ricardo’s thoughts about constructing a harmonious remote team offer a glimpse into the future of work. For him, the age of his employees wasn’t the prime criteria. Rather, it was their adaptability and suitability to a remote environment. “The job, you know, is remote,” Ricardo explained. This naturally draws a certain type of individual—one who thrives in autonomy. And while some need the hum of an office around them, others excel in the silence of their space. To ensure no one is siloed, Ricardo and his team practice open communication. Bi-weekly meetings give everyone a sense of what’s happening across the company.
However, ensuring cohesion isn’t only about scheduled Zoom calls. It’s also about giving the team the autonomy to create their own virtual hangouts and team gatherings. This hands-off approach might be the secret sauce that’s brought a myriad of individuals, working from various corners of the globe, together. But let’s not forget the magic of real-life interactions. For Ricardo, an annual retreat is a non-negotiable. “We think that a physical meeting, at least once a year, is important,” he admits. These retreats, having taken place everywhere from Bulgaria to Portugal, allow for a blend of relaxation and networking, fostering deeper connections.
When probed about the challenges they faced, Ricardo’s response resonated deeply, “In the early days, everything’s a challenge. Which makes it exciting, of course, but everything’s a challenge.” This raw honesty reflects not just the journey of his company but of countless startups navigating the waters of entrepreneurship. Despite his academic background in business, Ricardo is a testament to real-world experience being the most significant teacher. As for the formal education? Well, it seems business school left a lot to be desired in Ricardo’s eyes, save for a solid grasp of accounting and finances. But isn’t that the beauty of the journey—taking what’s useful, learning as you go, and adapting?
Crafting Culture in the Age of Remote Work: Ricardo’s Take
The surge of remote work has undoubtedly transformed how businesses operate. Ricardo, an astute entrepreneur with a flourishing company, shed some light on navigating this new terrain. While many of us envision a sprawling corporate landscape with meticulously designed office spaces, his company paints a different, yet equally fascinating, picture. The evolution of his team dynamics is a testament to how the professional world is adapting, focusing less on the physical and more on fostering a genuine connection among employees.
“You kind of learn as you go on,” says Ricardo, emphasizing the need to remain agile and responsive in the fast-paced world of business. In addition to developing a rich remote working culture, he also shared insights into staying updated in the industry. “I basically only use Facebook for business and staying in touch with authors,” he reveals, underscoring the importance of niche communities. It’s not just about staying informed; it’s about immersing oneself in the ever-evolving dialogue of one’s field.
Yet, the rapid developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) raised an interesting point of discussion. While some predict a significant disruption due to AI, Ricardo offers a nuanced perspective. “Writing and reading… are still very, very human activities,” he muses. The sentiment reinforces the idea that while AI might enhance processes, the quintessential human touch remains irreplaceable. As Ricardo aptly puts it, “I don’t think the human element is going to get out of it.”