Review of our first quarter

Our objective was to get into business by Dec 2020 and start selling. We’re very proud that we’ve achieved that objective and it’s been a really amazing journey so far. We’re also very chuffed with what we achieved in such a short space of time – and this was mostly thanks to having a clear objective a radical focus and some business agility.

It all started in late August of 2020, when Neal and Craig were sat next to a fire on the French Atlantic coast, eating stew and drinking beer after an intense surfing session. Craig showed Neal a prototype of the herringbone coffee table, made from recycled offcuts. There and then, we decided to see if there was a market for such beautifully crafted pieces of furniture.

We decided upon a clear objective, set up a kanban board to visualise our work, set some ceremonies and working agreements so that we can work together efficiently. After that, every two weeks we planned our work together in order to pull ourselves closer to our objective and remain as agile as possible.

Basically, to test the market we needed to build the minimum viable business to start selling. We also both had limited time since we both work full-time.

In the six two-week sprints so far we have:

  • experimented and chosen a name
  • bought a domain and hosting
  • designed a brand
  • commissioned a branding iron for our products
  • developed five products (one every sprint)
  • got feedback for all the products and started iterating on them to make them better
  • built a website
  • included a blog
  • set up the social media accounts
  • photographed all the pieces
  • set up an ecommerce integration for cards
  • set up the analytics so that we can track our own progress

We have now reviewed our objective, how we worked together and set our sights for a new objective.

Looking ahead at 2021

For the first quarter of 2021, we want to widen our reach within Cambridge and Pamplona (where we are based, respectively). We want to get to know our customers even better and understand them (i.e. you!) and keep the feedback loop live so that we are constantly learning and improving. Ideally, if we build enough trust and build a great ‘Saltwood experience’ then hopefully we’ll start to see some more sales coming in.

If you know anyone who might like these products, send them the website address!