Mondays can be rough and, sometimes, we can all use some motivation. Our #MondayMotivation blog series brings you tips and life hacks from industry leaders and some of the most creative entrepreneurs out there.
We sat down with Adero Davis, CEO and Co-Founder at FairFare, an efficient mobile platform that facilitates a user’s ability to find and book the cheapest and/or fastest rideshare options. She discusses disrupting Uber’s market share, educating first before expecting a behavior change, and working towards more women and women of color in the industry.
What inspired you to start your business?
The initial catalyst that inspired me to start FairFare was a rejection so to speak. I was working on a project in Nairobi another app called PoaPost (an on-demand courier app that focused on moving parcels affordably in and between rural areas in Kenya). While there I was introduced to some folks at Uber and they were looking for a General Manager for the country and I was invited to apply. I applied and went through 5 or 6 rounds. Within those rounds, Uber asked me to solve challenges in the region which they had not yet solved…I was a bit wary of this as it felt like idea-creeping but I continued. I get to the last round and wait for a yay or nay and I don’t hear back from them. I thought to myself that’s weird so I go on Glassdoor to see if anyone else had the same experience and it turns out 4 other people did and saw their ideas implemented in the market! Needless to say, I was upset. On a family vacation in Rhode Island, I lay by the water and thought how can I disrupt their market share? And that’s when and where I came up with the idea for FairFare. Our mission has obviously evolved since Aug 2015 but an experience gone awry was the initial catalyst. I actually wrote about it on Medium here.
What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
The biggest challenge we’ve faced thus far is educating users, basically messaging that enables behavior change. Most people are not aware that Lyft, Uber, VIA etc are called ride shares so we’re educating on what they are exactly and the next challenge is implementing messaging that changes behavior so that people will automatically associate FairFare with providing a choice of ride shares.
What’s been the greatest reward?
I think the greatest reward thus far is the steep and fast learning curve and the endless challenges..there’s never a dull moment
What is the biggest thing you’d like to see changed in your industry, and how are you working toward making that change happen?
I would definitely like to see more women in the industry and women of color. There is an obvious dearth, and I work towards changing that by sticking with our project, writing about my experience, not hiding who I am and connecting with platforms and women to help get the word out on women in tech. It is interesting to watch people’s reaction when I say “it was my idea”..eyes widen, mouths are agape as if a woman couldn’t possibly think of creating a platform that makes urban travelers lives more efficient.
Who or what motivates you to keep going, even when things get tough?
Support from family and friends who are so excited that I pursued and am sticking with an ambition. Sometimes I think maybe I should’ve taken the 6 figure salary out of grad school but then a random friend or family member will think it’s so awesome that I’m still pushing or say they’re inspired by my persistence and I snap out of it and am smiling and happy that I did not take the 6 figure job out of grad school.
What’s one piece of advice you’d give to another entrepreneur just starting out?
Know how to get to customer number 1, be flexible, listen, and learn how to filter information quickly.
What do you do every Monday morning to prepare and motivate yourself for the coming week?
I always wake up and say Thank You out loud, turn on “hustle hard” by Ace Hood some mornings and bop around my apt. Physical movement gets me excited for the day and week ahead.
For more #MondayMotivation, check out our interview with Bimla Picot, Founder & CEO of Reboundwear, a company that creates functional, yet stylish post-surgery clothing. She discusses how watching her family recover from painful injuries motivated her and her desire to disrupt the healthcare system in a meaningful way.
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