When we first came up with the idea for Polywork, our mission was to give you a spot on the internet to express every side of yourself – beyond just your 9-to-5. From the obviously professional (job title) to the subtly weird (quirky hobbies and interests) to the outright ambitious (building your side income and personal brand). Our mission is to empower professionals to pursue their passions beyond their 9-5 – and the first step in helping people achieve that level of expression, was to give them a place online to express ALL the things they do, to tell their story, and to build their brand.
When we launched in 2021, our original single player mode product spoke to this exact mission. We built a super unique way to empower people to express themselves, both professionally and personally with people sharing their work, hobbies, passion projects, and more. As a reminder, here are some original Polywork Sites: poly.me/cassidoo, poly.me/nickytonline, poly.me/js and poly.me/rizel).
"Going forward, Polywork will enable professionals to express all the things they do through a personal website builder of sorts. Polywork personal websites empower professionals to tell their story, build their brand, and for many, make side income. It will be 10x easier to use and set up than other providers, and nearly half the cost, because the current products on the market just aren’t cutting it."
We decided at the beginning of 2023 to really refocus on this direction and less on the ‘social network’ elements that we introduced in 2022. Fortunately that focus paid off and we are now making some changes to the overall product from next week.
Going forward, Polywork will enable professionals to express all the things they do through a personal website builder of sorts. Polywork personal websites empower professionals to tell their story, build their brand, and for many, make side income. It will be 10x easier to use and set up than other providers, and nearly half the cost, because the current products on the market just aren’t cutting it.
We believe the barrier to expressing yourself online is too high
- Existing products are focused only on your 9-to-5 work
- Existing products are either too complex or too arduous to use, taking months for people to get a site built that they are actually happy with
- It shouldn’t cost you over between $150-$300 per year to have a personal website
- A personal website is a must-have in the future of work (and in life)
What this all means for Polywork
Your current Polywork profile will still exist, but it’s now a Polywork personal website.
- You can continue to use it as your home on the internet to express who you are, for free.
- All the original Polywork concepts are still there powering your site – badges, activities, highlights, and more.
You can customize your site more than ever.
- We added all kinds of new content blocks, so you have the flexibility to share your work, your interests, your achievements, logos you’ve worked with, your portfolio, and more.
- We added the ability to customize the look and feel of your Polywork personal website with different layouts, typographies, and color schemes.
- It can be tricky buying and configuring your own domain so we made it possible to do it all on Polywork, so you really can set up a site within a matter of minutes.
You can leverage AI to make setting up and maintaining your personal website a breeze.
- We rebuilt the Polywork product from scratch with AI at its heart in order to solve a real user problem that it’s just too burdensome to create all your site’s content.
- While we’ve still got some ways to go, we’ve made incredible strides here in solving what’s been a two decade-long problem for professionals on the internet: no one has time to make and maintain their own personal website.
Explore some examples of personal websites built on Polywork
We’ve had early adopters trying out the new Polywork product, helping shape its direction over the last few months and so we want to extend a huge thank you to those who invested time.
Here’s a sneak peek of some of the personal websites built on Polywork:
- www.peter.inc (Peter Johnston: Founder & CEO, Polywork)
- www.volz.me (Michelle Volz: Partner, A16Z)
- www.adrianpcarbone.com (Adrian Carbone: Product Manager, x.com)
- www.gerrynewton.com (Gerry Newton: Architectural Designer, 33Nest)
- www.washjay.com (Justin Washington: Product Manager, Apple)
- www.uzcategui.dev (Laura Uzcategui: ML Engineer, TalentBait)
What’s leaving Polywork
As part of this direction, we decided to sunset our ‘social network’ features.
- We’re sunsetting Clubs
- We’re sunsetting the Feed
- We’re revamping Opportunities to be more valuable to you
Clubs: We launched Clubs in 2022 as a way to gather people around the same interests or side pursuits. While Clubs has helped our users connect to one another, we recognize that our primary business is not one of connecting people in groups. If you’re looking to connect with others online, there are countless social media platforms that, for now, can do this better than Polywork.
Feed: When we first built Polywork, we established a product principle around no systems of stress and we lived up to this. It was important to us to not have follower counts or like buttons or impressions, so our Feed exists without those dopamine hits. But Feeds on any platform tend to be performative rather than valuable. They sap your attention rather than offering you true knowledge, entertainment, or meaning. There are a multitude of Feed products online, it’s just not the business we want to be in.
Opportunities: Posting, discovering, and initiating opportunities to connect beyond your 9-5 has been a core part of the Polywork platform for the last year – and we know how important it is to our community. That said, we need to rethink this feature under the lens of Polywork’s primary focus, which is enabling people to build their professional brand online and make side income. We will be removing Opportunities on Polywork temporarily, but don’t fret. It’s just a short-term measure as we rethink how it fits into this new world. In the months ahead, Opportunities to search and discover people who also have personal websites on Polywork will be there.
Your content may also look a little different the next time you log onto Polywork. We are temporarily removing the Timeline View of your Highlights, so when you see your Highlights on your personal website, they will be in a list, not chronological. Don’t fret – your content is safe and the Timeline feature will be coming back in the weeks ahead. Similarly, your Followers and Collaborators will not be viewable as of Sept. 12, but the removal is only temporary.
We’re dedicated to creating a simple, expressive, and affordable place for you to call home on the internet – to help you showcase all the things you do, build your brand, and make side income. As always, we appreciate your support and value your feedback as we build. You can reach out to our team any time at email@example.com.
See you on Polywork.