📈 Vlad Magdalin. Webflow and the future of software on the internet.
Rad Dad, hosted by Kirill Zubovsky
Can you have a family, a successful company making millions of dollars in annual revenue, and do it all at your own pace, with a remote office company, while having a life that you want to live? Vlad sure can, and we think you can too. Life is too short to live someone else’s dream. The story of Webflow and life advice from Vlad, in this episode.
In this episode
- 00:12 - Who is Vlad Magdalin and what is Webflow?
- 11:35 - What does a founder hope for his or her company to be like?
- 18:12 - Is it difficult to maintain a positive outlook on life and work?
- 19:06 - How can you create a startup company while you have kids?
- 28:18 - What was one mistake that Vlad and his company made?
- 31:45 - How does a company and founder decide when a response is good enough to continue?
- 38:13 - What’s a good application to have as a founder?
- 43:05 - How is radical candor applied in a company?
- 48:52 - How do you prepare yourself when starting a company of your own?
- 57:05 - How does a company become part of your family?
- 01:08:43 - How can you keep your sanity as you work on your company?
- 01:11:00 - How can I learn more about Webflow?
- 01:12:32 - What is a unique aspect of Webflow?
Smash Notes summary for this episode
Who is Vlad Magdalin and what is Webflow?
He is the cofounder and CEO of a company called Webflow. Vlad, his brother, and his friend started the company. Webflow is a tool that allows anyone to create stunning websites with a click of a button. It is simple when you need it to be, and extremely powerful when you want it to be.
What does a founder hope for his or her company to be like?
For Vlad Magdalin, he says that Webflow has side by side missions that are on equal footing. He wants his company to have long-term sustainability. He also wants his staff to feel well supported and for their lives to be fulfilling in whatever that may be.
Is it difficult to maintain a positive outlook on life and work?
Vlad states that it has become something normalized to talk about with confidence. Before, they had to hide it. He was told to not mention to investors that he has kids. In the startup world now, the subject doesn’t feel like something on the fringes like before because he can talk about it more freely and confidently.
How can you create a startup company while you have kids?
As he was starting up Webflow, Vlad's kids were 1 and 3. He would mostly see them in the mornings, later in the evening, and all day Sundays. He and his wife made sure they had saved up enough money for a few months to invest full-time in the startup. Having no kids would have made the startup journey easier, but he does not have any regrets.
What was one mistake that Vlad and his company made?
His company launched a project too soon-- and one that he wasn't proud of-- due to being told to launch within two weeks. Vlad says he does not think he would be where he is today if he didn't launch at that time. The original product contained a lot of bugs, and his team had to spend months as the support team in order to fix the problems.
How does a company and founder decide when a response is good enough to continue?
For Vlad’s company, it was a combination of 80% of having boundless optimism, bordering on delusion about what they were building was a better way, even if they didn't get a clear response from the market. It was more so about going with a gut feeling than the market data.
What’s a good application to have as a founder?
That it's best to not beat yourself up over problems that don’t exist. Instead, you should just try to figure out the ones that are most important and need the most dedicated time. It’s okay to give yourself permission to take time and think about the business in order to understand certain problems that all companies face.
How is radical candor applied in a company?
For Vlad, his brother, and friend, they make sure share their concerns with each other out of care. They share a mutual growth as they talk through problems. They are candid with one another to get on the same page to avoid any conflict or blowups.
How do you prepare yourself when starting a company of your own?
According to Vlad, whether it’s to support your family or have the reoccurring itch to invent something for the world, you should find a drive to start something with a bigger purpose or solve a solution. When you want to get discouraged, your optimism will be a factor to have in order to take the necessary steps to make things a reality.
How does a company become part of your family?
Since Webflow is almost as old as his kids, Vlad and his wife both have invested and spent a large amount of time in order to create its success. It is integrated into their lives, but it does not overshadow their family priorities.
How can you keep your sanity as you work on your company?
There are various ways that depend on who you are. For Vlad, he disassociates his personal worth and the company's worth from other people’s accomplishments. It's freeing to see that what he's doing is important in the world. What keeps Vlad sane is seeing the kind of positive impact his company has made in other people's lives.
How can I learn more about Webflow?
Webflow is unlike any other website builder, and it is definitely not like Squarespace. If you'd like to learn more, check out Webflow University and see for yourself. They've got short and funny explainer videos, just for you.