Four Parent-preneurs Launch the OpenTable of Online Babysitting Services

Learn how Lynn Perkins and her co-founders launched the OpenTable for babysitting services and why she believes entrepreneurs should always surround themselves with great people.

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So, my co-founders (a savvy group of Internet veterans) and I put our heads together and ultimately created UrbanSitter. Now headquartered in San Francisco, we run a growing online service for parents and sitters to connect through people they know. Our goal is to leverage technology to power a faster, more personal babysitting service.

Best Success Story:

Since the site went live last Aug., we’ve acquired thousands of members and expanded to 12 cities across the United States and secured $1.75 million in seed funding.

Biggest Startup Challenge:

A primary challenge was getting started. Moving from a job that had considerable structure and clear goals to the vastness of starting something from scratch was daunting.

It can be overwhelming to think about all of the things that need to be accomplished when you start a business. When you couple that with not knowing if the business will work — or if you will earn a paycheck again — it can be really intimidating. I work best when I create a timeline and clear deliverables for myself. Being able to focus on just a few components of what I need to accomplish makes me more efficient and less distracted by the sheer volume of responsibilities.

#1 Tip for Entrepreneurs:

Hands down, entrepreneurs should surround themselves with great people.

Building and running a startup has its ups and downs. Working with talented people, who you like professionally and personally, will make the good times even better and the rough times easier to navigate.

I think it is good to find people who have skills and strengths in areas that are different from your own. My co-founders’ roles and skill sets are very different from mine. Their responsibilities are critical for the success of UrbanSitter. They are fantastic at what they do and I genuinely like spending time with them.

Connect with UrbanSitter on Twitter and Facebook.

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Photo: Pictured Left to Right; Lynn Perkins, Andrea Barrett, Daisy Down, Hadar Wissotzky

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