Meet Art Shaikh, the Founder & CEO of DigitalWill.com. Digital Will is a death tech solution that keeps working for you, even after your passing. Art has spent over 20 years in the tech industry, working to build high-performance teams at companies like Dun & Bradstreet and Salesforce.
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We are thrilled to have you join us today, welcome to ValiantCEO Magazine’s exclusive interview! Let’s start off with a little introduction. Tell our readers a bit about yourself and your company.
Art Shaikh: My name is Art Shaikh, and I am the Founder & CEO of DigitalWill.com. DigitalWill.com is a death tech solution that keeps working for you, even after you die. I have spent over 20 years in the tech industry, working to build high-performance teams at companies like Dun & Bradstreet and Salesforce.
In 2013, my father passed away unexpectedly, and he didn’t have a will, let alone an outlet for storing his login information for various online accounts. My family and I were scrambling trying to piece together all of his digital assets. His iCloud account had over 10,000 photos and videos stored in it, and losing those would have been devastating to all of us as a family.
It took me months to recover all of the passwords and accounts, and I got to thinking that there NEEDS to be a more modern, trustworthy way to store and manage all of this after death. Otherwise, family members are left to handle it all on top of the grieving process. So that is what I set out to do. Now, we intend on being the go-to company for all of your essential end-of-life services.
If you were in an elevator with Warren Buffet, how would you describe your company, your services or products? What makes your company different from others? What is your company’s biggest strength?
Art Shaikh: There is currently no solution for the problem we are solving for millions. When we die, our digital assets are left to chance, and our loved ones are left to to find passwords, manage accounts, and handle a lot of issues that can be confusing. This is not helpful when you are grieving the loss of a loved one. So we make it simple. We store all of the account information on our private and secure servers, and when you die, we act as the fiduciary that disburses these digital assets to the executors you choose.
Companies currently market products they are calling a “digital will”, but they are no more than PDF builders. These are items that carry no weight because no one has automated the execution process until we did it. By automating the administration of your digital will, we are using smart technology to ease the grieving process on your loved ones. Attorneys, meanwhile, are charging up to $1,500 just to get your digital assets added to your will. You then must pay every time you need to update or change anything, which can cost anywhere between $100-$500 per update. When you think of the number of times you have changed your Facebook or Netflix password…now imagine paying $100 every time you do that. You can see why so many people don’t have a will.
Rather than paying thousands of dollars upfront, we have a subscription model for only $9.99/month. This includes unlimited updates and changes to a customer’s digital will. We also enable our users to leave individualized final messages for their family and friends, and also document their funeral wishes.
Quiet quitting, The Great Resignation, are an ongoing trend causing many businesses to struggle keeping talent engaged and motivated. Most are leaving because of their boss or their company culture. 82% of people feel unheard, undervalued and misunderstood in the workplace. In your experience, what keeps employees happy? And how are adapting to the current shift we see?
Art Shaikh: We have survived the “quiet quitting” trend and the Great Resignation because we enable our team members to be a part of the process. We all operate cross-functionally like a tight-knit family. We have kept our working model as flexible as possible, giving everyone the opportunity to handle what they need to in their personal lives.
The team remains happy because we are a mission-driven startup that is set out on changing the world for the better. When you have the right people with the right mindset, then you end up retaining your talent long-term. To date, we have 100% retention.
Online business keeps on surging higher than ever, B2B, B2C, online shopping, virtual meetings, remote work, Zoom medical consultations, what are your expectations for the year to come and how are you capitalizing on the tidal wave?
Art Shaikh: As more of our lives are lived online, we need a place to ensure these digital assets are stored securely and disbursed properly to make things easier on those we leave behind. Our service is built to help manage this in life and beyond. We are already seeing tremendous demand for our services, as more and more people start to think about the implications of their digital footprint in life and beyond.
Business is all about overcoming obstacles and creating opportunities for growth. What do you see as THE real challenge right now?
Art Shaikh: The current challenge every business needs to meet is trust. So many businesses have violated the trust of their customers by selling their data to advertisers or other third parties. Subsequently, the public has become skeptical of companies in general. By keeping our word to maintain the privacy and security of our customers and performing our fiduciary duties, we will work beyond the typical trust issues brands have with their customers.
In your experience, what tends to be the most underestimated part of running a company? Can you share an example?
Art Shaikh: I think that the work is what gets underestimated. While many think “running” a company means directing and delegating work, and it does to a degree, it also means doing the work. Leaders need to be able to get their hands dirty in order to succeed.
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Art Shaikh: Success for us means giving our users the top-tier experience they deserve in a digital estate planning tool, and providing a service badly needed by more people globally.
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Art Shaikh for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Art Shaikh or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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