Updated: Apr 12, 2019
It is important to build a great symbiotic team around you.
Note: This is Part II of a series of articles titled – “Tech Startups do not need money to succeed. ”
I have had four years of start-up experience, and I believe I have gathered a few nuggets that are worth sharing. It is true that there are many people with more experience. However, I have the opportunity to share mine, and I hope it becomes useful to someone.
In my introductory post, I stated that technology startups do not necessarily need hard cash capital investment to be part of their recipe for success. In this part, we are going to explore how to pick that co-founder or partner who will help you turn your idea into a working product, and ultimately business.
The founder of a startup bears the vision of that start-up – essentially, the idea behind the startup, and its future. The first step in creating a startup company out of an idea is to find out who else out there has similar interests or shares in the belief that the idea can actually become a great product. This is what makes the exercise of headhunting efficient partners and co-founders a big problem, especially for young people.
It is important to build a great symbiotic team around you. So it helps to know which traits to look for in potential teammates. Say, you wanted me to be your partner or co-founder:
a) Do I share your vision?
Obviously, great businesses start with great ideas. but not every great idea makes a good business. You will always know if I share in your vision the first time you tell me about your idea. Sharing in your vision means I have a sense of belief that your idea could ultimately turn into a business, I have a few ideas on how we could make the idea better, and that I am ready to be part of it. It also means that it is one of the causes I care about and I can be proud to be part of.
b) Do you need the skills I have, or do I have the skills you need?
Depending on the idea itself, you will need to know what kind of skills you need to build the product. Most tech startups have an app, website, automation, maybe intelligent robotic ideas, etcetera, each of which requires specialized skills to achieve. For instance, an app idea will need a good app developer, marketer, and programmer. If I possess any one of the skills needed to make the idea happen, you are free to pick me.
c) Can I handle delayed gratification?
Everyone needs some money to live their life, and it reaches a point where you cannot do anything for free. However, this is not how startups work. Unless you are very lucky, which is rarely the case, your startup cannot start making money the moment it starts. I must be willing to toil hard for a long time to make a great product, take it out there, get what the users think, re-iterate the product several times and start making money out of it. This means that for a start-up to break even, it will take a great deal of work and time and I must be able to handle that.
d) Do I have a few hours per day to spend on the startup?
Everyone is always excited when they hear of a great idea, and always want to be part of it from the onset. Well, there is no trouble having one more person on your team, but there is a huge mess having a spectator rather than an active thespian. I must show that I can spend a considerable amount of time on the startup in a week, otherwise, I am not the best person.
If the person you would like to add to your team fits the above criteria, I believe you have your co-founder or business partner.
I know the list is endless, I would like to hear what more you would consider when creating a team so I can learn from you too. Let me know I the comments.