At ReadyForZero we strive to always be available and accountable to our users. That’s why we personally respond to every e-mail that’s sent to our support inbox and why we have pictures on the About page. Now we’re sharing our stories here so you can get to know the fun and diverse people that are working hard everyday to make ReadyForZero better. We hope you enjoy these interviews – and don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comments below!
You’ve met the team members – now it’s time to meet a fearless leader of the pack! It’s time for our interview with ReadyForZero’s CTO and Co-founder: Ignacio Thayer. Nacho, as he’s more commonly known around the office, is amazingly innovative and incredibly focused on making ReadyForZero the best it can be for our users. And he’s a pretty formidable poker player to boot. Read on to learn more about our CTO!
What were you doing before ReadyForZero?
Before ReadyForZero, I was at Stanford. I started in September and in January or February, I realized that I didn’t want to do a PhD anymore. I’d known Rod for about two years at that point and we’d actually been talking about ideas for a while. I started talking to him more seriously like, “Hey what are you doing? Are you interested in leaving your job?” We decided to come together and we applied to Y Combinator.
Did you feel nervous to make the switch to ReadyForZero?
At Stanford, it was that academic world so it didn’t feel fast-paced enough. The start up thing is something I’d always been interested in and had talked to Rod about also. It is risky in a lot of ways but I realized actually that the hardest part about it isn’t necessarily that it’s hard work or that it’s risky. It’s that you have to ask other people to make a lot of sacrifices too. I’m happy working hard and I like a challenge, but the part that has been surprisingly hard is asking family to make sacrifices.
What has been the most gratifying moment in your career so far here at ReadyForZero?
There’s a lot of small successes and I feel like overcoming challenges is gratifying. It’s very gratifying is to see members of our team pick stuff up of their own accord and make good decisions and use good judgment and take ownership of things. That’s incredible. I’ve seen people do things that are completely outside of their skill set and they’ll just take them on anyway. Another thing that’s very gratifying is to see when people write in. It always really touches me that people have received some real benefit from it.
What are you most excited about for the future of ReadyForZero?
I’m really excited about where we are right now in the sense of that I feel… kind of like the wagon is catching up to the horse in some sense. All these things are really catching up whereas before, there were fires here, wheels falling off the wagon, etc. We were more focused on trying to keep things from falling over. That’s a very exciting period and I feel like that’s kind of starting to gain momentum, and I’m really excited about that. We’ll have a lot of opportunities to scale benefits that we’re delivering to people and invest a lot of energy in improving the things, so I’m really excited about that. Really excited.
So what is your favorite place to grab lunch with the team and what do you order?
I think our new favorite place is Freshii. I usually order some sort of wrap.
If you could have any game to play at the ReadyForZero office during break time what would it be?
I think a ping pong table or pool table because I play both those games. But they’re pretty standard, so maybe… if the whole office was in a rink so you could skate around it. I used to play street hockey with my friends when I was a kid so that would be pretty cool!
What did you think you wanted to be when you grew up?
I always had an interest in cars – designing cars. I would always draw schematics of cars and stuff like that. I remember at the Boston Museum of Science, there was a computer program where you can design your car and that was the first thing I’d go to and I’d just sit there and design all these cars.
So time for some of the quick-fire questions… starting of course with: if you were an animal what animal would you be?
What is your favorite chore?
It’s kind of funny – cleaning the bathroom. Because you see the results and it kind of glistens when it’s clean.
So if you were to trade for it, what’s your least favorite chore?
Least favorite is doing the dishes…
Coffee or tea?
Iced coffee in the summer, hot tea in the winter.
Bagel or donut?
Dogs or cats?
Skiing or snowboarding?
Favorite time of the day?
I think it depends. I love to go hiking around 4 p.m. because then it’s beautiful with all of the trees . But my favorite time in the office is in the morning.
The team is always happy to see Nacho in the mornings! And in the afternoons! Anytime really… that’s what happens when you channel the Cookie Monster.
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