Q&A with Founder and CEO of Voxie
Voxie’s Founder and CEO, Bogdan Constantin, sits down with Nicolas Terwindt for a quick catch-up on the Voxie journey thus far.
A Sit-Down With Bogdan Constantin
I recently spoke to Voxie’s Founder and CEO, Bogdan Constantin. Bogdan describes himself as a creative problem solver, and he’s certainly shown that in both past and current ventures. Voxie is a conversational automation platform (SMS) that helps businesses engage with their customers resulting in 10x more engagement and revenue than other marketing channels. Voxie augments legacy mediums like phone and email to better connect with their customers through texting SMS.
- What made you want to be an entrepreneur?
I’d consider myself a creative problem solver. I love to find solutions to problems that impact a lot of people, and really improve the lives of these people through the solutions that we create. For me, entrepreneurship is the fastest and most effective way to accomplish this at scale, meaning I can help a lot of people at once. I’ve always loved the art of creation, and the art of business in general. Entrepreneurship has always come natural to me, and I truly always knew I would be an entrepreneur. Voxie is my second venture. My first company was in the menswear space, which we exited to the Founder of Mens Wearhouse holding co. A problem that I experienced in this last company actually inspired me to start Voxie. All in all, I love to solve problems that can impact a lot of people. I want to find problems that can turn into big businesses, and surround myself with really smart driven people to help build the solution.
- What is the most important fundraising tip you can give to entrepreneurs?
It depends on which round you’re raising. For people raising early on, I will tell you this:
If you ask for money, you’re going to get advice. If you ask for advice, you’re going to get money.
It’s very cliché, but for me it’s always been very true. My recommendation to anyone that’s thinking about fundraising and speaking to sophisticated investors, is to ask for advice to challenges that you’re encountering. Another bit of advice is that you should have a very clearly defined, compelling reason as to why you’re building this company. What is the problem that you’re solving for? Finally, how big is the problem? A lot of entrepreneurs get mired into the cool technology, and hiring this person and that person, but these are all by-products of a really large market. David Cummings has a rule of three T’s: timing, team, and T.A.M. Are you in the right place? Do you have the right people? Is the market big enough? I would say that the last one, Total Addressable Market, is the most important, because if you’re building a solution that doesn’t have enough of an audience or willing buyers, then it’s probably not the right solution for scale and thus, venture.
- Being recognized as A Top Best Place to Work in Atlanta, and also having grown 320% in 2021, how have you maintained a quality culture while growing so quickly?
I would tell you a lot of it comes to our hiring practices on the front end. We invested heavily on candidate screening and building relationships during the invu cycle and really learning what they want to do, what motivates them, and what they struggle with. We filter everything through our five core values. Every single person has to pass these different screens, and culturally has to be aligned with what we’re building. If there are any red flags in the process, then we don’t hire that person. Even as we’ve grown dramatically, we’ve had a ton of open job openings that haven't been filled, and they won’t be filled until we find the right person. We won’t compromise on the caliber of the candidate, which I can tell is really easy to say, but it can be really hard in practice. When you have major business needs, and everyone's hair is on fire, knowing that hiring just one person could help out a lot makes it quite tough to stick with it. If that person isn’t the best fit however, it will hurt you way more in the long-term. It’s really easy to say this now, but it’s true. We won’t sacrifice on the quality of what we call A+ players. We only bring top folks at Voxie - which is what powers that 320% growth into the future.
- Describe Voxie journey thus far in 10 words or less?
Bogdan gave two nuggets and I thought they were great so I decided to list them both:
Meaningful, because we’ve been able to help others.
Drinking from a firehose.
Bogdan and the Voxie team have done an incredible job growing and scaling their platform. In February they closed a $32 million Series A raise. With this level of growth, they are hiring for many different roles, so if you or someone you know is interested in joining a rocket ship, check out Voxie’s Job Openings page.