I had the pleasure to interview Raquel H Schafhauser, the co founder of Mobs.
Can you share with us the story of how you decided to pursue this career path?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs. My mother was a pioneer of the female software-engineering world in Germany during the 1960s, and has always been a huge inspiration to me. She is a great role model and example of strong female leadership. My father was the founder of a cutting-edge software company in Spain during the 1970s, so I come by my passion for business and innovation honestly. I always knew that at one point I wanted to have my own business and after law school I went on to get my MBA.
I started my career working for other corporations in sales, marketing, and human resources which gave me the foundational skills I needed to start down my own path to entrepreneurship. I made the move to to the US and Silicon Valley in 2013 in order to pursue these kinds of opportunities. When the chance to work with my brother presented itself, I knew we’d be a great team. My brother and I founded our company together and he is the CTO. While he takes care of the technology behind our company, I run the business side of things as CEO.
What lessons can others learn from your story?
This is a marathon not a race. It’s not an easy thing to do, starting a new business, and if you are in the blockchain tech industry it’s even more difficult. But good things come to those who work hard, don’t take anything for granted, and aren’t afraid to learn something new in order to stay the course and reach for the bigger goal.
Can you tell me about the most interesting projects you are working on now?
Mobs is definitely it. Mobs is a mobile app powered by blockchain that gives people the ability to create and monetize crowdsourced videos.
We are a B2B B2C platform that gives marketers a new way to engage their audiences with secure access to real content while providing everyday creators a tool to generate great videos together. Mobs is the ideal space for marketers and creators to securely create and monetize together.
Working on this project is exciting because it gives us the opportunity to work in two trending industries: video and blockchain. A lot is happening in these sectors and we are very happy to be part of it all.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
My parents, my mother is someone that I look up to and admire. She has been an entrepreneur since before it was really “a thing”, especially for women. She worked hard to break into a field she wasn’t really welcome in, not caring about what other people had to say about it and just stayed focused on doing what she wanted. My father was a builder by nature, whether it was with his hands or with his mind, he was always building things and solving problems, this is where I get it from. Both my parents have been so supportive of me.
I have to also mention my brother. He is my co-founder and has been by my side encouraging me to challenge myself to step out of my comfort zone every moment along this journey.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention a few of my guiding stars: David Perez, Veronica Torras, and Arturo Duran. I would not have made it this far without their guidance and expert insight.
Honestly, I feel the same about every single person that is involved in the Mobs project — I could not be more grateful for all the help I’ve had.
What are the 5 things that most excite you about blockchain and crypto? Why?
1) I like the fact that blockchain is reshaping business models. Businesses that never could have existed have ground to stand on now, like companies that allow people to access microcredits, certify a supply chain, or democratizing real estate.
2) Smart contracts are making things easier. These contracts have a self-executing nature and the terms and conditions are fully visible and accessible. This makes them a perfect solution in terms of accuracy, transparency, and speed.
3) Blockchain technology provides inexpensive and direct payments worldwide. Disrupting banking is something that’s really exciting.
4) Similarly, with frictionless payments comes the potential for micro-payments. With this ability new business models can exist, like pay-per-use household appliance ownership. Fees for making payments can be more costly than the payment itself, so this is a big game changer.
5) There is potential for changing the voting system. Could the transparency and security provided by using blockchain technology raise the number of participants in elections? By using a voting system that actually can be trusted, we could see a very different election process.
What are the 5 things worry you about blockchain and crypto? Why?
- The more time passes without consensus on how to regulate, the more business have to wait in limbo, when this technology should really be allowed to soar for the good of the future.
- Adoption can also be affected by the fact that governments haven’t solidified regulations. Peoples’ perspectives and feelings about new technology is directly linked to how well governments approach this new industry. The longer it takes for regulations to be set, the more skepticism there is surrounding this new technology and the good it can do for our world.
- The environmental costs associated with running this technology are indeed something to be concerned about. However, there is new tech coming out that has already solved some of these problems. Companies, like Ardor, are paving the way for other technologies to do better in this regard.
- I’m concerned about the big businesses that make a profit from the pain points that blockchain solves. We can’t hinder progress for the good of the present and sacrifice the future.
- The bad press that scammers and bad business brings out. This kind of press overshadows the good things about new technology, making it difficult to gain traction and buy-in.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share a story?
So many people have helped me along my path, being a woman in this industry is especially hard and I really believe in paying it forward. I am happy to share my experiences and resources in hopes of helping someone else on their journey. “Paying it forward” is such a profoundly positive action that one person can do for the world. Something that seems so small can do a lot of good.
Here’s a story for you, I was introduced to someone who was just starting her career in marketing, and since her company was looking at blockchain for some business solutions, I met with her. She asked many questions and we talked for a long while. I shared everything I knew with her and we decided to stay in touch. Over the course of the next several months she would ask me for feedback on her deck and other advice based on my experiences. We really connected and enjoyed talking with each other so when her career opportunities shifted and she came to me again for support and insight, we finally decided to work together.This woman is now one of my best collaborators. She helps with all our marketing collateral and I am so thankful to have her on my team. Good things come to those who are generous and offer goodness to the universe.
As you know there are not that many women in your industry. Can you share 3 things that you would you advise to other women in the blockchain space to thrive?
- Becoming an entrepreneur, starting your own business is hard work. You need to have fun while doing it. Do what you love and love what you do.
- Be kind to yourself, failing is part of the learning process.
- Spend as much time as you can around people that know more than you, it will continue your education and help you grow.
Can you advise what is needed to engage more women into the blockchain industry?
We really aren’t that far away from a time when women were discouraged from getting involved in the sciences and technology. Correcting for gender imbalances in tech won’t be an overnight fix, however, I think that if we support and mentor young women today we will be shaping the tech leaders of the future.
What is your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that had relevance to your own life?
“Life is 10 percent what you make it, and 90 percent how you take it.” ― Irving Berlin
This is completely true! I had a teacher that told me once, “if a problem doesn´t have a solution, then there is no problem anymore.” That made me realize we tend to worry about things that we have no control over. Nowadays, I don’t even think about problems as problems, they are just challenges! It doesn’t make things easier, but It does make the ride more fun.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Maybe I already did! I would love for Mobs to start a new movement of expression. In which everyone has access to the tools needed to tell video stories. Stories of protest, of creativity, of people standing up for what they believe in and what matters to them, and sharing these video stories with the world.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
You can find me on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/raquelherscha/
You can stay tuned on our social pages for progress and updates as well.