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Hackernoon logoA Day in the Life of a Perpetual Swaps CEO in a Very Volatile Crypto World by@cl-overbit

A Day in the Life of a Perpetual Swaps CEO in a Very Volatile Crypto World

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@cl-overbitChieh Liu

The cryptocurrency market can be strenuous at the best of times. It’s the stock market, but infused with far more frantic energy, one that can gyroscope back and forth. Novice traders can get burnt. Experienced traders can be overwhelmed by trying to keep track of their positions.

And CEOs can face an unbearable pressure making sure that none of that happens to traders. Personally, I relish the challenge that the cryptocurrency market brings, but it demands constant vigilance and perseverance. It can seem easy to others, the idea that you are an exchange CEO who simply sits at the top, but the truth is you are switched on almost always. 

The consequence of not being on top of your game is that you lose out in a very competitive but lucrative space. There is a constant whirring in my mind regarding how to make Overbit offer more than other exchanges. It’s not simply a matter of just getting an exchange up and running. You need to add to the foundation if you’re going to get anywhere in this space. 

That is a thought that regularly appears in my mind during any given day.  How does one stand out from the competition?

Thinking About What Traders Want

Traders are at the heart of all platforms and exchanges — they are the ones that products and services are built for. The best CEOs and management teams think about the experience from a trader's perspective, not from a business point of view. 

What is trading like for a novice trader?

Are experienced traders limited, and would they wish for more features?

I spend some time thinking about these questions. One bad review can cascade into a throng of disapproval, and there is no coming back from that. Right from the get-go, you have to meet a certain baseline of quality. It’s important to me that I check that we meet this baseline of quality every day.

One specific challenge is finding a balance between usability and depth. Novice traders can be left aghast at the complicated nature of derivatives trading. They wouldn’t know where to begin. That’s why we emphasise the Overbit Academy, a place where new traders can learn the ropes. At the same time, we want to make it fun, so we launched the Overbit sketches to inject some much-needed levity into the cryptocurrency space. 

A few markers that I have in mind, which helps me keep track of making the platform approachable, are ease of trading, security, depth, a wide variety of offerings, and ancillary features like the Overbit Academy. I constantly think about these markers when considering improvements.

Thinking About What Traders Don’t Know They Want

If knowing and giving traders what they want is one thing, knowing and giving them what they don’t know they want is another thing altogether. 

Remember, users come first, so it is the duty of the management to make the platform as intuitive and usable as possible. This means having to iterate and test different features and see if it helps the trading process. Whether that is incentive programs or quality of life features, the idea is to make the trading process so easy that it becomes second nature.

This is something that all cryptocurrency entities face, whether it is an exchange or a startup. It is a critical part of business development. It helps with standing out from the competition, something that I will discuss further on. 

One of the features that we are working on is the rewards hub, which includes the highest payout amongst all affiliate programs on margin trading platforms. The affiliate program is only the first of many planned enticing rewards programs. 

There will be more on this in the near future, but suffice to say that we are designing these programs such that users go ‘Oh! That is a very tempting offer that can help in the long run. I wish that more exchanges would do this.’

That’s the mentality we’re going with respect to introducing new features.

Always Keeping an Eye on Security

Security is on every executive’s mind 24/7 in the cryptocurrency space. I can only imagine what it must be like to wake up to hear that your platform has been hacked or been compromised.

The users are counting on you to be transparent and keep things straight. They entrust their funds and personal information to your platform, and that is a phenomenal responsibility.  

The cryptocurrency space has endured some miserable moments throughout its brief life span. This gives the market a bad rep, and the market is on the verge of hitting the mainstream, so it behoves us to ensure that security is airtight. The more mainstream cryptocurrencies become, the more scrutiny authorities will impose on the market.

On Upping the Competition

What would entrepreneurship be without the urge to outdo the competition and give users something more?

The cryptocurrency market smacks of tough competition. Multiple assets vying to be the top asset in a particular niche like cloud computing or the supply chain. Multiple hardware wallet manufacturers that constantly showcase their strong security. Exchanges frequently announcing new features and loudly proclaiming the comprehensive nature of their platform.

As tough as it can be in this market, it’s still important that this competition exists. It spurs us at Overbit to do better, to convince traders that ‘Yes, we are the right platform for you.’

This can be a demanding ask, especially with the fact that we are up against some of the biggest names in the space. We wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t think we could though. We know for a fact that we have something to offer that other exchanges don’t, and that we can bring new life to the derivatives market.

An example of something that we offer that others don’t is FOREX margin trading on top of cryptocurrency trading. Users can work with two markets and diversify their portfolios. The highest leverage for FOREX trading is a considerable 500x.

Analysing the Market

This is something that almost everyone with skin in the game does, but it’s doubly important for CEOs. 

I have to study the market. Every day, all day. I need to know what the next possible asset for listing might be. I need to hear from the crypto community about what they want. I have to ensure that my teams are putting the right information out there so users can make the most out of trading.

Then there’s the news cycle, which can be hard to keep up with. Regulatory changes can either doom or bless a cryptocurrency entity, and by keeping an eye on it, I know what future business ramifications might be or what steps to take.

Final Thoughts

A day in the life of a perpetual swaps CEO is no easy day. There is a constant examination of so many things, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything else. No CEO would put themselves under this pressure for the sake of it. In the end, you’re doing it because you love the technology and space, and you want others to be able to benefit from it too.

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