Boss It Like

How to Boss It Like… Didier Rappaport, CEO at Happn

By Kitty Knowles 18 February 2016
How to boss it like Didier Rappaport, founder Happn. Pic: Happn

Britain’s business leaders are changing the world. In our weekly series we find out how they get the job done.

There are a handful of business leaders and industry figures in Britain who are changing the world. Jo BertramEileen Burbidge and Sarah Wood seem to get an incredible amount done, in an impossibly short space of time.

This morning we’re talking to Didier Rappaport, founder at hyperlocal dating app Happn, who is undoubtedly a productivity guru.

Read more: Happn: the perks and perils of dating on your doorstep.

Prior to launching his app, the French businessman co-founded numerous companies (including video-sharing website Dailymotion), he’s sat on company boards, and he still runs his own Web Strategy company for businesses.

Now Rappaport’s most focused on Happn however, which recently revealed it has 10m members and is on track to reach 30m by the end of the year: That’s a lot of work to juggle when you’ve also got to find the time to be honoured as GQ France‘s ‘Digital Man of the Year’.

A busy man, with big ideas, The Memo asked Rappaport how he gets it all done.

What time do you get up, and what part of your morning routine sets you up for the day?

I wake up everyday at 6:30am and have my breakfast listening to BFM TV (a French business and economics news channel). Then, I usually work from home for a couple of hours before going into the office. This is a vital part of my morning routine – at home, I’m in a quiet environment and I’m completely focused. It’s the perfect moment for making calm, strategic decisions. I wish I had more personal time but the days always go so quickly!

What apps or methods do you use to be more productive?

I don’t tend to use any apps in particular to help me organise my time or be more productive. My calendar is, of course, my best friend – I have notifications popping up all day long to let me know where I need to be or who I’ll be meeting next.

What smartphone do you use?

I have an iPhone 6S, black, 64GB. When you spend as much time on your phone as I do, the extra memory really comes in handy!

How many people, outside of family, do you meet in a day? And who are they?

At Happn, we now have more than 60 people in the team, so I get to talk to more and more people everyday. But apart from my colleagues, I usually meet between three to five new people a day, from our investors to the Uber driver. I’m a very talkative person, so I’d like to think that it’s easy to start up a conversation with me.

When do you work until? Are you still sending emails in the night?

I’m normally in the office until around 7pm, and then stay “connected” into the early hours.

I like my team to feel that they can contact me at anytime and you’ll often see me sending emails late in the evening or even the middle of the night. I suppose it’s similar to my morning routine – a quiet period where I can carefully think through any decisions that need to be made. Of course, I don’t expect anyone to answer right away!

After work, there are two things that I really enjoy doing: meeting up with my friends for a nice dinner, or watching a film. My favourite director is Quentin Tarantino by far, and I always ensure I watch his films on the big screen.

Read more: Happn: the perks and perils of dating on your doorstep.