Loneliness is something most of us feel at home. The vast majority of people know only a couple of neighbors and while many communities now have a hyperlocal street Facebook, Nextdoor or Whatsapp group how we feel in our areas hasn’t changed much. Connection, and feeling connected, are two entirely different things.

You might wonder, is it me? Am I the only one out there feeling this way? Maybe everyone else is happily clubbed up and I’m the outsider?

Your local community

We as humans…

What is Clubhouse

Clubhouse is the social network we all needed in 2020, in a disconnected world where we all created free time from the efficiencies of being in a single place (at home) someone built a way for us to keep talking. Such a simple idea, one so stimulating our socially starved pandemic world couldn’t resist. Clubhouse blew up.

The ‘first’ version of Clubhouse was actually a place for hanging out, people didn’t mind who you were and it was the private space where a lot of likeminded folks included each other, listened and took part in life and work. …

99% of companies today have lost their way to validate that customers want what they’re currently building. This series will put your process through its paces as well as teaching new tricks along the way.

Part 1 is dedicated to making sure what you want to learn isn’t going to burn up with a false positive

Our aim over this series is to use Marty Cagen’s model of validation to understand the three deal-breakers for anything we think can create value:

  1. Can we build it
  2. Can they use it
  3. Do they want it

If you have a direct question on…

Building products that end up being ubiquitous in the world normally requires a number of methods to earn the lofty heights that are your front page app on your iPhone.

Let’s unpick how you can aim for much-coveted 10x metric jumps

Doubling the TAM

Traditionally products are launched into a single home market where the company is based. It then grows based on a single large channel of acquisition. …

This is part 1 in a series exploring how to solve a product unknown. In this part, we’ll define an unknown worth solving, how we want to solve it and a basic structure to learning these insights from (potential) users. Onwards!

This work starts with the simple truth, at this point, we have no idea how to solve a customer problem.

As obvious as it sounds, all we need to do is figure out what we don’t know. 😊

Meet Halo — A social network for locals

At localhalo.com, we build an app people use to connect with their local community, think of it as all the group…

I just received this request on LinkedIn:

Hi James, Thanks for connecting, Just reaching out as the world starts to normalise though the current climate remains uncertain as you might need some administrative support. I have taken the plunge and set up my own Executive/personal Assistant company!

It’s a lovely outbound but doesn’t feel very personalised for someone who is asking to be there in every intimate professional moment. I’ve had many of these requests and I’m sure several will be outstanding people, so I wanted to offer a little insight into how a recipient might be more receptive:

Can we make this more compelling?


If what you share fits in the category of an For Your Information (FYI) then it should be conveyed at 2x speed.

How do I share information twice as fast? Record it and share your updates via links that support faster transmission. Youtube gives you this for free; set your videos to unlisted for a private solution which as a phone-friendly way share video&audio updates

I want to index what I share. Otter.ai allow not only 2x playback but also has built-in transcription; you can paste voice notes into other apps like Slack with a full text.


Many people are currently reviewing how they design the structure of their companies to embrace a new normal. But even in historically remote companies, the same basic structures have persisted. Before making large changes around how your teams work it’s worth just remembering that only a few core systems have been proven, regardless of the working environment.

Organisational design (engineering inclusive) for startups is one that has no definitive answer, but companies usually share in one of three main architectures and all of them can scale:

  1. Customer squads — you arrange the organization around serving each respective customer segment (e.g…

We love predicting the future. Unfortunately, we are dreadful at doing it. Just think about the number of science fiction films predicting the year 2020, and how wrong they were. It makes you think: Imagine the power we’d all have if we could see in the future. It’s a superpower for a reason.

You’re probably thinking, wait, but why is the title of this article called communities of the future then? we want to show you some new projects that are changing our communities, rather than stating what the future will bring. The new communities won’t be like the old…

Feeling safe where you live

Developing strong relationships with those that live around us and those we work with can be a great start to feel happy and fulfilled.

Relationships of this kind are what we call communities. Communities are just people who come together for a shared purpose regardless of whether the community is a sports group, a tech start-up or a bingo meet. 😆

For communities to be great they need a few values:

  1. They need to be inclusive; this is where everyone feels welcome.
  2. We need our voices to be heard.
  3. Communities need to empower all their…

James Routledge

Digital and product thinking

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store