Back when I wanted to start my software company and was looking for potential partners I came across different categories of I-Want-To-Start-My-Own-Business archetypes that I discovered later was not the right fit.
I wasted a lot of time in communications, meetings and even partnerships that actually started but didn’t go anywhere.
This triggered me to write this article for new founders so they can be on the lookout for certain archetypes to avoid and what to look for instead.
Here they are:
Technical people who have been working at big companies for many years and are totally out of touch with reality, how the real business world works and that at the end of the day, it’s about the dollars and cents. Most big companies isolate their developers from any direct contact with customers. They don’t know where the work is coming from, how project costing works and other financial aspects of the projects they are working on. As a result, they lack fundamental business mentality and have a lot to learn before thinking of starting a business (any business) on their own. They have been sheltered for too long by their employers. Yes, they aspire to leave their jobs and start their own thing. And yes, you might think that makes them perfect for CTO roles but think again. They will drain you and hold you back too much. Any partner you get has to have good business sense and be with you on the same page regardless if they are technical partners or not.
Youngsters out of university who are all against working for others and gaining experience first. They want to jump right into entrepreneurship and gain their experience the hard way (by failing a lot). Avoid those as well. Maturity and experience go a long way.
The ‘all Gung-Ho about business’ types who claim that a good business person should not have to know anything about the underlying technology and can hire ‘others’ to do that work for them. They will cost you too much money and make a lot of bad decisions along the way because really if you don’t know much about software and tech, you shouldn’t start a tech company.
So now that we know what to watch out for, what do we look for?
My Criteria For Tech Business Partners
- Being well informed about the domain
- A good understanding of modern marketing and sales
- Outgoing personalities that attract others to the company
- Great communication skills
- A good presence online