Bits & Bytes Ep. 7 — How Battlefy Became One of the First eSports Companies Before the Industry Existed
In this episode, Sam and Jean hopped on a call to catch up with Justin, CTO & Co-founder of one of Launch’s very first alumni companies, Battlefy. We chat all about Justin’s experience building the eSports company while the industry was still starting up, how to fail better, and much more.
Episode TranscriptClick Here for the Transcript:
Jean: Hi, everyone, welcome back to another episode of Bits & Bytes. Today we have another guest and the gaming industry. Justin from Battlefy. Justin, how about you give yourself a quick introduction about what you do? What Battlefy is about.
Justin: All right. Hi, everyone. I’m Justin. I’m one of the co founders and CTO of Battlefy. At Battlefy, we built a platform for eSports, which is competitive video gaming. Basically, you know, kids nowadays, they play video games, they compete, go to play in stadiums, and they win millions of dollars. Our platform, our services, our company, we look to power all levels of competition. So you can imagine from like amateur, to collegiate where we, you know, UPC uses us to kind of the beer leagues, to, you know, semi professional leagues, all the way up to professional leagues. So we work with a lot of like game developers, who use us so Riot Games, we work with them on collegiate League of Legends. So that’s really fun, where college students play in there and are able to win scholarship money. We also work with like EA on Apex legends and their global series. So all around the world, people can compete and be the best kind of Apex legends players. We also work with different brands, recently, we work we’re working with like the NFL, who wants to kind of, especially in the in the pandemic wants to kind of create these events for kids to be able to come on and really interact with the NFL brand, which is exciting. So, you know, we have a lot of community side organizers use platforms and create lots of cool content tournaments. And we also work with the game developers brands to kind of help them get into eSports. And help them run really successful tournaments, full sizes.
Jean: Awesome. So for those that might not be you know, familiar with eSports. In the gaming industry too much how exactly does Battlefy work as a tournament platform? Like, is it like a automated kind of like software where you know, people can just join in and join our teams? Or how exactly does it work?
Justin: Yeah, there’s really kind of two sides to it, one, for tournament organizers, TOs they come on, and hey, I want to have run a league of legends tournament, this Saturday at seven o’clock. And so they’re able to go to our website. And for every game, we have different customizations a little bit, you know, maps and things like that. So they’re able to come in and input you know all the details about the tournament, and they can go and now market that page share on the Facebook groups, Twitter, and people can come and join. So on the player side, when players come in and join those tournaments, we collect the right information. For example, for League of Legends, we can collect their summer name and with that, we can also grab some of their stats. So you know the players know who they’re competing against. Then on tournament day, we provide organizers more tools, such as you know, seeing tools, able to create brackets, single nation, double nation, all those different kind of competitive formats. And when they do that, they can put the teams in however the way they want using our tools, and players will get that on our platform, pay, you’re now playing against this team, and the tournament progresses. And we also have some cool features like admin kind of support tools. So when a player runs into trouble, they can open a ticket and the admin can come on and, and in chat kind of work together to solve whatever issues they have. So we built a lot of tools to for them to build run the great, seamless tournament experience.
Jean: Honestly, I wish this existed back when I was at school. I’m not sure if you guys know but like as a few I ran a gaming club specifically for like PC games. And one of our like, it’s like cool stuff that we did was we run week tournaments as well as like Starcraft or like Dota and oh my gosh, like trying to organize a tournament from scratch is a lot more difficult than you think.
Sam: Why are you shouting out all these dead games?
Jean: I’m sorry. I’m an old generation gamer.
Sam: I was gonna say like from Justin’s intro, he’s like, Yo kids can join tournaments. I’m like, No, no, no old people join tournaments, too. They just don’t win.
Justin: It’s cool. Well, actually, like, there’s actually like corporate leagues now. So we actually play in some of these corporate leagues. And so you know, what, when when you get out from school, and you have a job and stuff like that, it’s, it’s harder to kind of get in touch, stay in touch with people, some of these corporate leagues as well. It’s pretty cool. You kind of it’s team building at your company, and you get to play with other companies around you. And really, like, well, I guess it’s team building, in some ways when you win sometimes, if you lose you, you kind of, you know, shout at each other here and there, but it’s all good fun.
Sam: I don’t know if when Jean and I play games together, whether it’s team build or team break.
Justin: Depends on how competitive you are, I guess.
Jean: I mean Sam always mentions how competitive I get with Valorant, so.
Sam: I don’t think it’s just one game. I think it’s game specific.
Justin: Competitive is in your nature, right. So
Jean: Yeah, I mean, I’m more interested in what you said, like these, like, corporate leagues, like so I remember you told me a bit about this before but like, so are there a lot of actual corporate teams like in Vancouver itself? Or is it kind of like you guys also do like compete against like, international, like United States corporations or?
Justin: Yeah, the one so we kind of joined they’re North American. So you may know Day, right? A big kind of Starcraft streamer, him and his business partner started it back then with After Hours Gaming League. And it kind of evolved from there. But yeah, there’s a bunch of companies, North America eSports really has no boundaries, right, which is pretty cool, you know, we get to play with teams from like Amazon, IBM, Facebook. You know, some of these teams have really interesting team names as well. It’s like, we played against Facebook, and the name is like ganked by Zuk. Yeah, it’s just fun to kind of hang out and chill and talk with people from all different companies.
Sam: Yeah, no. It’s cause like, I know I’ve played a couple sports in the past and like locals who are listening to this episode, you’re gonna recognize some of these names like Urban Rec or Ice 604. If you’re in a hockey or whatever, like those leagues, you know, a lot of professionals like go in those leagues. Right, but it totally makes sense. I think you guys have come up at a right time. Where we grew up as gamers like, like Jean says, The Starcraft and the Warcraft and the red alerts. And now we’re growing up and are like, oh, where do we go now?
Jean: No, it’s awesome that there’s an online platform community that, you know, gamers now. Like, they don’t have to just like disconnect with just, you know, as they get older, like you can actually play with your coworkers now and stuff like that. I don’t know. That’s awesome to me. Because I think I think one of the growing pains of gamers is that, you know, you have less and less time to spend towards your hobby or your passions, like I’m in that boat right now. like trying to find that balance and fun in gaming is a little hard, but I think having corporate teams would be fun. I don’t know me and Sam were like talking about all the time, but I don’t think we have enough gamers on the team. And I know I don’t have the patience to train someone.
Justin: Yeah, but gaming’s also pretty cool, right? When you know you have friends back in high school, university, you’re kind of together. But you know, as you graduate and you life kind of goes on, people move away as well. And one of the great things about games is that you could just pick up and play with your friends, no matter where there are Toronto, Seattle, San Fran, wherever you can play together and compete together again. You know, my group of high school friends, we play basketball. We could play some video games now that they’re in different cities and stuff, too. So yeah, gaming really brings people together.
Sam: Especially especially now right? Like, have you guys like I think I know the answer this but have you guys seen your platforms like spike up because everybody’s at home now?
Justin: Yeah, I think in the Mark Taper period, we definitely had a big spike. And, you know, with people staying at home, I think, you know, kind of, in general, the gaming industry has been doing relatively well, right, because everyone’s kind of indoors. So it’s pretty cool that, you know, people are playing video games competing using that as a way to kind of cope with, you know, the challenges of the pandemic.
Jean: Yeah, I think I especially love how the image of gamers kind of changed cause like, you know, before, like, I mean parents used to always be like stop gaming, like go study, but now we have parents that encourage their kids to, you know, like the recent Fortnite winner, he was 15 something’s really young?
Yeah, $1 million. Like, that’s insane. Like, I think we had another guest Spiro talking about how gaming for kids is actually a really great educational way of going about it. Like, I remember I did a paper on, you know, the violent effects of, gaming on like, children. And the studies were very outdated. But you know, like, those were what, you know, the studies were about, they thought that video games are bad for children that there is these violent tendencies that would possibly appear from them. But it’s really cool to see that narrative change a lot, because I think that gaming has a lot of great benefits. So is that kind of, you know, like, what kind of inspired you then to start up Battlefy? Because I’m assuming, you know, you’ve been in?
Justin: So, yeah, I guess I’ve always kind of had that entrepreneur, spirit. Um, so, you know, it was hard kind of working nine to five, I guess, you know, working at a corporate structure. It’s, it’s different, right? Not for everybody. So, you know, I worked at EA before then kind of started my own startup with my co founder, Jason, our first startup is actually in the charitable giving space. And you know, that we learned a lot of lessons that didn’t pan out, I went back to EA, I think we got bored again, you know, for life. And we basically like, hey, well, what else is our interest? Right? What are we really kind of passionate about? and turns out where we’re both really big into gaming. And, you know, I think I think the first version, our app we were looking at, like guilt and guilt management and stuff like that. So we, there was, there’s already a bunch of good tools out there for that. And Jason had a bunch of friends in Seattle who were running these draft League of Legends tournament. So captain’s draft, you know, you have six, eight captains, and they pick from the pool of players, and they compete on the weekend. And we basically, try to improve their lives kind of like what you said, right? Like, it takes a lot of effort to run those tournaments. So we built lots of these little tools for them to register players in to do the seeding to the drafting. And that basically allowed them to run two tournaments a week instead of one. And so, you know, that kind of started to snowball a little bit. Different community organizers came out and reached out to us about it, like “hey, we heard you have a tool, can we use this too?” And kind of started from there.
Sam: One of the nit bits that we always mention, every time we have Jason or Justin on is that Battlefy was the very first Launch Academy company. They were the first ones to not just apply, but like show up. And they showed up on the Saturday, where we weren’t open. And they worked out a Launch Academy for a few days before Launch Academy actually showed up.
Justin: Oh, we got to get started working. So we needed some space.
Jean: Awesome. Um, yeah. Like, I was just wondering, like, you know, I was assuming there aren’t even now, I don’t think there’s too many eSports-specific companies in Vancouver, you know, I can name a few like The Gaming Stadium, Battlefy, but, you know, we have great gaming company studios, but not things super eSports specific. Right. Did you find yourself having any challenges being one of the earlier eSports companies? Because I know, eSports, you know, started trending more recently, but must have been a little bit more, you know, unknown back then.
Justin: Yeah. How old is Launch Academy?
Sam: Going on about 8 years now.
Justin: 8 years? So I guess that would be how old the Battlefy is now?
Sam: Easy math.
Justin: Yeah. Definitely back then, it wasn’t as mainstream and well known. We kind of expected but it was kind of unexpected, in a way where, you know, a lot of investors that we talked to, didn’t really know about eSports and what it actually is, right. Most of it was was in Asia, Korea and stuff back then. But, you know, when we talk to them, they didn’t know this was a thing and phenomenon. And, you know, we had to describe them and say, “Hey, look, there’s like traditional sports with, you know, sticks and balls, but imagine replacing that with a keyboard and mouse and they were headsets.” And I think we would show them clips of like, IEM back in the days and with the with the state, you know, kind of a huge convention on the screen. And then we played them video. And then at the end, you know, these kids were like jumping up and shouting and they were super excited for their team. And once we finished playing that video, you know, the investors jaws were dropped like, “This is a thing?” Yeah, so nowadays, it’s it’s a lot easier to talking to people, it’s actually quite well known. People who I talked to who I don’t expect to kind of know, they’re like, “Oh, yeah, that thing.” So, but back then I think it was it was quite new. And, you know, we were trying to find ways to explain what this could be and what it is. So that was really fun.
Sam: What did you think are some of the things that have happened since 2012? That’s kind of made this industry progress, like were there like, key points that you can go point out like that was a moment when now from this point on, I can just reference that, or was it different things or different people doing different things?
Justin: There’s, there’s a few things, I think, but streaming I think is one of those very important ones where it is so much more accessible now with streaming and VOD, you know, you can open up Twitch and just watch people play games and watch videos of people competing. You know, you go on YouTube and gaming videos, let’s plays and stuff like that. It’s so accessible, so that, you know, people can just consume that content really easily. Right. You know, it’s like replacing, you know, traditional TV and stuff like that as one of the primary forms of entertainment. So I think that has been really important. And the other is also kind of money going into this ecosystem, right. With more money, everybody’s able to do more things and you know, along comes marketing right, and more awareness. So I really think it’s, it’s those kind of two things that’s starting to you know, propel and everyone’s able to see, you know, this cool thing, eSports.
Jean: I think it was really cool, especially when, this is from years ago, but even then, it’s still really cool that League of Legends, one of the I think, still most popular games out there, like they hosted the LCS tournaments in Vancouver, which, like, you know, it’s crazy, because you know, when the, I think it was the Coliseum, or like, you know, usually you just like look at the Coliseum, you’re like, you just go there for like concerts like big names, like, you know, Beyonce or like, Backstreet Boys. Sorry, I’m really showing my age here. But, you know, like, you would just never imagine a stadium full of, you know, like a huge age range, like young kids who, to know, early 30s, even like, you know, older parents that are interested in like, supporting their kids passions, like, it’s crazy to see how far eSports is calm, especially in Vancouver.
Justin: Yeah, one of the longtime League of Legends, pro players Doublelift, he retired today announced, but he was kind of reminiscing, and like, way back then, like, season one or two, I think the meme around was like, you know, the championships were held in like, Frank’s basement, one of the casters and stuff, but it’s like, held in one of those, you know, small spaces, you know, 30 people watching. And you know, those were like the season one, season two kind of times and you know, it gets to be in like stadiums. Like, like Pacific Coliseum here. I think and, and the World Championships and stuff are in like the Olympic stadiums and like, China and in Korea and stuff. So from, you know, someone’s basement to kind of world class stadiums. It’s insane. These like 10 years, how much changed, how much growth there is.
Sam: I was wondering if you would find a way to put Doublelift into this podcast.
Justin: Yeah, I gotta shout out.
Jean: Yeah, I had no idea he retired today. But he had a very long run and it’s impressive he lasted so many seasons.
That’s awesome. I’m like, you know, the whole you know, starting in like, Frank’s basement. It’s kind of like the equivalent of you know, when you have a startup in the garage and there’s just a couple of you like working away, slowly building up to a large company like Amazon or Google like, it’s pretty cool to see that transition into it.
Justin: Yeah, the esports journey, right. It really is like that. What we really believe in as well, is like the the bottoms up approach, you know, working with the community working with the players, because it’s the players who are so passionate that really brought eSports to where it is today, right? A lot of where we are comes from passionate people who get on camera, you know, do casting and passionate players who, who practice play and, and that’s all they had back then right land parties, and stuff like that. So you know, it is kind of like the startup journey. You’re in your basement. You just got a camera, you just got the game and you you go.
Jean: Start from the bottom, now we’re here.
Sam: Keep coming up with those old drops.
Jean: Doing a 90s throwback this episode.
Sam: I think it’s interesting you mentioned that because you guys like Battlefy, when you think about it, you guys are a startup in an industry that I would argue is also starting up, right? Like, especially when you guys started. So like, what would you say were some of like, the, the upsides to being in something where like, literally everybody is young and new. And like a lot of the partners you’re working with, especially early on, are passion projects, right? They’re not corporations, like they are now but like back then, you know, it’s people’s basements, passionate people, like how, like, what was that experience like? Both like pros and cons?
Justin: Yeah, I think it’s cool, you know, that I’m able to work in the gaming industry. And you know, when you’re young and you grew up, your parents tell you to not play video games, that it’s not going to help you in life? Well, you know, it kind of is helping me now. So it is growing, and there’s lots of opportunities to kind of be in the space, and just doing something that you’re really passionate about for work is great, you know, there’s a lot of cool opportunities in the space to kind of join. I think it’s, you know, the challenges of a growing industry as well, though, is that, you know, everyone’s figuring stuff out, you know, there isn’t really much guidance that you can get a lot of experimentation, which, you know, you gotta keep learning, you’ve got to keep seeing what works. And you can’t kind of rest on your laurels there. But I think it’s also, you know, really a benefit, that we’re in a growing industry, it also means that you can make some mistakes, right? Because, you know, people are investing dollars, and there is a growing kind of trajectory for this market, where it allows you to kind of experiment a little bit and, and figure out what what might work and what might not work.
Sam: Yeah, no, it makes a lot of sense. So like, side question, do your parents still tell you to stop playing video games nowadays?
Justin: Yeah. You know, the topic’s been brought up but
Sam: Yeah, at some point, you have to go and quote, unquote, get a real job. That’s not just playing games all day.
Justin: Yeah, no, but they they kind of know, you know, entrepreneurship, startups, and I think that’s what they are quite proud of, what I’ve kind of done.
Sam: Yeah. Do you think there was a turning point or for you guys, specifically, the support was always there. Because I know a lot of people have different startup journeys, that they have to convince their family first.
Justin: Yeah. Parents are always, you know, they love you, they always care about you. They want you know, what’s best. And I think when you start out with, you know, kind of no funding, it’s always going to be that risk and challenge. But I think definitely when you are more stable, you get some funding, especially when I was able to start paying myself. That’s when, you know, the \comfort of that idea is a little bit more for the parents.
Sam: And so like, I think, kind of tying that over. For other people that are it could be gaming, but I don’t think it’s specific to that. I know a lot of people that are listening to this might not necessarily be gamers, so we can expand it beyond that, but for people trying to join like an industry that has stigma, like gaming, like, what should they expect? And like, what advice would you have for them?
Justin: Yeah, in the gaming industry there’s a lot of things that aren’t great when you’re working in the gaming industry, I think, but people do because it is such a passion, right? There are a lot of challenges that people in the industry are trying to work out. I mean, I started working at EA, and in video games. I was lucky to be part of a more central team, testing team, but I kind of worked closely with the games team as well. And you can see all the passion that people put into those games. But when you’re when you’re a big company, and you have obligations to meet – deadlines, release dates, and those are set in motion, the marketing machine is turning, you have to hit those dates, right. And so there are kind of long hours, there are a lot of work that you kind of put in with, you know, the crunch. But, you know, I’m hoping it’s something that, you know, people keep talking about, keep addressing, but it is, you know, if you work in gaming, it’s a lot about passions. Another kind of example, it’s like, you know, you enter the industry as testers, right? That’s one of the very common ways be a QA tester, you can start getting to know different people in the gaming industry and move to different departments and stuff. So I know definitely a few people when I was working at EA, who started from that path, but, you know, it’s, it’s you when you’re testing, it’s not really playing games, you know, it, you know, people say, it’s always fun. Yeah, you’re like, Oh, you get paid to play video games, that’s great. No, but you’re literally, you know, pressing the same button, going through the same menu, same motions to try to replicate bugs, and you know, for a lot of people can kind of ruin games in that way. But if you pass if you want to be in that industry, you know, people put a lot of effort and sweat into kind of being in the industry. And I think that’s why it’s so cool because of the people.
Sam: So one of the things you mentioned was was the crunch. So for people that aren’t familiar with it, like, what is the crunch?
Justin: Yeah, basically, I think when you’re launching a game, the last few weeks, right, you’re trying to get the game out, it, you know, has to go cold and shipped to the printing presses to kind of make the physical copies, there’s, you know, day one, patches, things like that, there’s a lot of work leading up to last minute. So, oftentimes, there’s more work that you can kind of complete in a in a nine to five, so people stay around, and make sure to kind of complete those tasks. You know, you can work late in the night. And, you know, sometimes you may work a Saturday as well. So that’s kind of the crunch time for in the gaming industry, there’s often, you know, deadlines. And it’s tough, it’s hard to imagine not having a time with, maybe your loved one and stuff. But like I mentioned, there’s a lot of love going into these games.
Sam: So like, I know, there’s quite a bit of attention, especially I think, the last couple of years about about the crunch. And and you know, the workplace specifically in gaming? Like what are what are your kind of thoughts on, like, you know, should the crunch exist? Is it a necessary evil? Are there ways that that, you know, I guess individuals working in gaming can can take care of themselves, but also maybe corporately? Like, how does the structure need to change?
Justin: So the big topic, I think, it’s gonna take a lot of conversation for, you know, the industry to figure out what’s the right balance. I think there are a lot of people who love and are really passionate about games and put in a lot of effort as well. And wanting to make sure, and you guys know, there’s a lot of expectations in the gaming community, right, there’s really high expectations and when those expectations aren’t met, people are, you know, frustrated, very vocal. So, you know, developers, you know, want to meet those expectations. So there is a there is a balance I’m hoping that the industry can find, but it will be from a lot of conversation and probably a lot with from the players as well, right? If we really anticipate a game, we really love the game, we want it to be really, really good. We may have to accept that there will be delays.
Sam: Mhm. And how does that tie into what you guys do at Battlefy? Obviously, I think you’re you’re more software than building a game, but mean is the same industry and culture.
Justin: Yeah. I mean, we work with, you know, the game developers, publishers and brands, and they all have events, right? So these events have marketing behind them. And oftentimes, you know, some of those dates might not be able to be pushed, right. So we really try to come in early in the process of working with our clients. And, you know, with our expertise from, you know, technology side or admin side, player operation side, really advise the client of like, here’s the timeline, you guys should expect to deliver a world class eSports event. So when we’re able to come in and really show them the work that goes into what a great event is, oftentimes, we can make sure we deliver on time and on quality. And, you know, really figure out what the work is that is actually involved.
Sam: And what what about the culture within your own company inside with with you and your team members like it? Would you say it’s more like gaming more like startup? Or like, what what did you guys kind of try and pay attention to, as you were building out your team?
Justin: Well, I think to, to be a part of this growing market, that’s growing ecosystem, like we mentioned a little earlier, right? You’re gonna have to have a lot of passion about this. There are times where you know, things don’t go your way, or you have to put a lot of effort in, and you, you’re gonna kind of feel the stress here and there. And it really is a lot of passion for gaming and eSports, that carried us through to where we are today. Everyone’s passions, really shows and the effort that everyone puts in. So I think, like, that is really one of the key things that we do kind of look for, not necessarily, you have to be fully like a “I’m a gamer, I understand everything,” but looking at somebody’s passion. If you can have passion for something, outside of gaming, even, we can see you apply yourself to our work. And we want to be people first, now we want to let people know, “Hey, this is what it means to work in our industry, this is the kind of work involved.” And we want, we want to take care of the people as much as we can, we’re, going to do our best, make sure we scope out, you know, all our events, all the work. And we’re going to, you know, communicate very openly, whether internal or to our clients, and you know, set the right expectations. And we will be successful in delivering quality tournaments to the players, which will then reflect really well, to the brands and the game developers that we work with.
Jean: Back to one of the earlier points where you mentioned like, it’s very people-focused, and I think we also touched upon the fact that this industry, it’s very, almost like very intertwined with the community as well. There’s always community pressure to always push out with a great product, like do you think that it’s one of the reasons why the industry itself has been so fast paced, like at a rapid pace, has an able to grow at such a fast pace, compared to maybe other industries that don’t have that much of a community push, like, they don’t have instant feedback, just like the gaming industry does, or eSports, because we have, like, you know, speeding, for example, for our audience. Um, a lot of gaming companies, when they push out a game, they have community forums, where a lot of the companies would actually monitor thrive, such as like subreddit to see where the critiques are, what the gamers are unhappy about. There’s a lot of feedback here that they use. Do you think that that’s maybe one of the reasons why this industry has been growing so fast, do you see as like a negative thing or a positive thing or double sided?
Justin: Yeah, I think that’s one of the key things. I’m lucky to be a tech entrepreneur. And, you know, with the web, you know, you can get a lot of feedback really quickly. And that is kind of the same even more with gaming, right? Because gamers are so vocal. We are always on Twitter and stuff. And we can always see our users leaving feedback for us as a platform for our community organizers. So there’s a lot of conversation going on. You know, if, if they’re constructive conversations, that can definitely put stuff off forward. And there’s, there’s definitely a lot of those. But you know, because everyone’s past it, there are kind of a lot of trolls online as well. But, you know, it is kind of what it is. And, you know, I much prefer to get a lot of feedback and be able to talk to users, because that, ultimately, is how you’re able to iterate and really try to hit something good with your audience.
Jean: And I guess this is maybe more for other entrepreneurs or founders themselves, like, how do you handle such an influx of feedback and critique? I know, some people might not be as comfortable receiving a huge influx of critique at one time when some product launches, like what are some ways that you kind of live with the mentality that you have going in?
Justin: I think all those critique is really to help you, right? I think, you got to really think about it that way. And consider that everything people say is just something that you can learn. And learning is a big part of being entrepreneur and and in our company culture is to, you know, just listen, distill the feedback, and, you know, understand, like, you’re gonna fail many times before you kind of hit something where it seems like it’s a success. Right? So if you’re not getting the feedback, you’re not learning, you’re not failing. And if you don’t do that, quick enough, you’re not gonna kind of do it fast enough with the money and then that you have.
Sam: So like, so I’m, I’m firmly of the belief there’s, there’s different types of like, people who fail, right? Like there’s, there’s people who are good at handling failure, right off the bat, and, you know, they take it in stride, they take their learnings, and, you know, they grow from that, and then there’s people that are that, you know, don’t like to fail. And I think a lot of people normally fall into this cap where, because failure, failure doesn’t feel good, right? Like you did not succeed. Like, which, which one of those would would you consider yourself to be in and like, either way, like, how do you, you know, get better at failure?
Justin: Why I think you can only get better at failure by failing. Oh, yeah. I mean, I, I wouldn’t say I handle failure really great. I am pretty competitive person, you know, through through gaming and stuff as well. And, and, you know, losing games can really get to me at times. But, you know, it’s, it’s taking a step back, even with games, I’ve been playing a lot of Liga legends trying to hit, you know, gold tier and stuff like that. But you know, you you want to have a goal, but, you know, really analyze what you’re not doing, right, you know, you can feel like, there’s this part of the game that you need to work on, or there’s this part of the product that you need to work on. And, you know, set a kind of a mini goal for yourself there. And then find what the KPI is that you should be measuring, and see where you land. And when you land there, you can now go talk to your users, you know, like, hey, these people aren’t really receiving the feedback, or the product that I have very well. And why is that? So you go talk to them find out why. I think if you do more of that, it becomes less of like, Oh, this is really on me. More. So like this is kind of a puzzle that you’re trying to solve. All right, we’re
Jean: Gonna wrap this up with some questions that we always ask each of our guests. So if you were able to create your dream team for your company, this can be composed of you know, celebrities, dead historians, professional gamers, who would your five be or you know, it could be three or even just one partner that you know, will help you drive up the success about buy, and why would you choose them?
Justin: Oh, this is for the company.
Jean: Listen, I do this for the company or just even just
Sam: I don’t think you need to be specific. But if you’re going to build a company, What’s your dream team?
Justin: Um, I don’t know if there’s like, specific people that necessarily like, like want but you know, there are types of people that I think are really crucial in, in a in a startup and companies that are trying to grow. I think those are people that we look for in our kind of core values. You know, there are people who are You know, kind of have that grit relentless. And there are people who, you know, always want to be improving, right? For the kind of values that I talked about. It’s very important, I guess, in terms of like, that drive and competition kind of tying into eSports the professional gamers actually kind of fit that mold, well, in certain ways, right? They have to strive to to win, you know, let’s say worlds, right, and they want to keep improving, and they put dedication to it, you know, you know, gamers that I kind of follow like, like reckless, in the EU LCS, you know, teamliquid in North America, LCS and stuff like that. They all have that drive. And it’s very inspiring to kind of follow the professional gamers who are just like the 10 of the traditional sports athletes I kind of look up to, and how much drive they have to win, how much passion dedication to continue to improve. And you know, how much teamwork and making sure your people first and because a lot of it’s a lot of these games are team sports, too. So, you know, I would say the professional gamers kind of that I watch and follow they have a lot of the values that we’ll look for the team.
Justin Wong is an entrepreneur and the CTO and co-founder of Battlefy. Battlefy is an online platform for esports, or competitive video gaming, that powers all levels of competition from amateur to collegiate to professional leagues. At Battlefy, Justin is passionate about building a strong, talented and motivated team. He applies his core values of putting people first and continuous learning every day. These days, with COVID-19, he’s doing his part by staying home and working hard by playing video games.
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Learn more about Battlefy: https://battlefy.com/
Connect with Justin on Twitter: https://twitter.com/justinzwong