My (JaredC) Candidacy for Head Chef

I already announced my (JaredC ; jaredc#9700 ; kagan here in discourse) candidacy and interviewed, but I figured I should create a proposal here too.

Here are some links to learn more about me:

Some blog posts, especially relevant to the questions from the interview:

Some of the courses I work on: Courses – NYCOO


LexDAO Operating System that I designed and ran as the first Operator: LexDAO DAOops Ops Operating System - Google Docs

Web3 credentials side project that I’m working on and wrote the smart contract for:

Answers to some other questions I’ve gotten during the interview: jaredc#9700 Candidate Document with Sushi Interview Questions #1 - Google Docs

Based on going deeper in the Sushi community for the last month, and based on being a candidate in this hiring process, here are my current thoughts on where Sushi is and where it should be going.

Obviously, I’d have a lot more research to do before finalizing my plans. If I did join Sushi full time, I’d start by talking to everyone and reading everything to better understand the state of the organization. But so far, here is what I expect my top priorities would be:

  1. Update the Operating System.
  • I’d start by documenting the current Operating System (Your Startup Needs An Operating System – NYCOO) and updating it to ensure that Sushi achieves its mission, including creating or updating Foundational Materials, Planning Process, and Execution Systems, Chef, Samurai, and People Management, Organizational Design, Communication Systems, Decision Making Systems, Information Management and Documentation, Accounting and Bookkeeping, Financial Reporting, Legal Structure. We might already have some of these things or some of them in development, but I’d complete it quickly and efficiently based on all the similar work I’ve done before.
  1. Use the Operating System.
  • I’d then use that Operating System to prioritize, plan, and execute on the work, including finding Sushi’s place in a crowded market of defi products and figuring out where the best ROI is and where we can find the biggest short-term increases in users and revenue, which leads into point #3:
  1. Redesign Website.
  • I’d prioritize a redesign of the website, with a focus on simple navigation, simpler copy, intuitive use, and product cohesion. Below is more information on the redesign plan:

I’ve always liked and believed the concept that “The product you sell will be a reflection of the organization you design.” (5 Guidelines On How To Design Your Organization – NYCOO)

I’ve heard it said several ways, such as : “You ship your org chart.”

That seems like the case for Sushi too. The website seems like a reflection of the state of Sushi’s organization: It looks great on the surface. It has some fantastic underlying tech, with a complete suite of all the basic defi products: swap, multi-chain swap, stake, borrow, find yield by providing liquidity or lending, and so on. A new user can combine these tools and have everything they need to become a full featured defi user. It’s incredible that the team has built all this. When I first got started in crypto, I would have loved to find a product where I could do all this in one place.

But the product, like the Sushi organization, the pieces don’t appear to be coordinated to work together smoothly. All the raw materials are there, but everything needs to work together cohesively to succeed.

When I hit the Sushi website, I would be really confused beyond the basic features and even those would require clicking and reading and googling and thinking harder than necessary.

Because of that, new and even non-expert Sushi users will be confused and won’t get the full value out of the product. I should note, I’m fully aware that the team is already working on improving the user interface. Still, I’ll provide some thoughts for your consideration.

If I could hit the Sushi website and intuitively use multiple features, that would be an unparalleled experience in defi, competing and beating even FTX’s feature set, which no other DEX can do.

The big problem is that while the website looks great, it’s overwhelming and confusing for users. Put yourself in the position of someone who isn’t a Sushi power user and tell me that it’s easy to understand what’s happening, to navigate the site, and to move between the products smoothly. Look how simple Uniswap is. Yes, they do less, but it’s also so easy to use, which is more important. A product MUST be intuitive. So, how do we make Sushi easier to use? I’m not a designer, but I do think that Sushi could massively improve its UI. Some steps to take to improve:

  • Research. Look at the data of who is using the site now and how they’re using it. Interview users and look over their shoulder while they use the website to understand their experience.
  • Personas. Create personas of who we want to serve. Is it defi experts or also onboarding novices and beginners?
  • Copywriting. Use more plain english terms. Calling things Kashi, MISO, Sushi Bar, Onsen in the main nav is fun and on brand, but also confusing and wastes time and brain power for the non-expert user. (Again, I realize that efforts are underway to improve this.)
  • Navigation. Shrink the nav to the most important tools and put the rest under a category with all the lesser used tools.
    • Trade > Swap: no reason that should be two clicks, Limit doesn’t need a spot in the nav.
    • The other navs should be simpler too, the additional features can show up in the following screen.
  • Onboarding, Education. Focus on education and onboarding for users new to crypto, users new to Sushi, and users who are ripe for going deeper into the Sushi toolbox, by using lots of educational content, hints, tips, videos, and product walk-throughs. The Samurai do a wonderful job with this presently. We need to empower them to continue building educational content.
  • Intuitive Design Generally. Simple user flows. Simple moving between products and features. Simple and obvious next steps and calls to action. We want to make it as easy as possible for the user to navigate, learn, and move from feature to feature.
    • Swap then stake
    • Swap then lend
    • Swap then provide liquidity
    • Earn interest > Options for earning interest > Walk through for each option with how it works and the risks
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