Mistake 1: Wrong Combo of Founders
OK, so you have found an amazing idea that will change the world. This idea has been keeping you up at night and you have thought of ways to make it a reality over and over again. Great!
Since we all know that one hand can’t clap, you are now thinking who can help you out and be part of your founding team. STOP! don’t do the mistake of reaching out to friends and family JUST because they are friends and family.
This first choice you will make, is the most important in your next 3-year journey. Pick the right partners that could actually help the business and not because they make you feel comfortable. You and your friends could be amazingly smart and sharp, but are you all smart and sharp in the right fields needed to grow the company?
Some questions to ask before you choose your founding partners:
- Are they better than you, or a copy of you, or worse than you? (be pragmatic please)
- Do you have the diversity of experience / education / passion that could drive the business?
- Have you worked together before? and if so, was it a pleasant experience?
- Is your connection (friendship or family) going to make you shy away from challenging each other?
In my case, I had an amazing founding team. However what we oversaw was the fact that we shared the same experiences and education which made it really hard for us to cover other demanding sides of the business.
In short, think carefully about who would help taking this amazing idea of yours to excellence and who would have the patience, endurance and time to basically have no life for the near future.
As ideal as it may sound, if you can make a reasonable team of founders with the following set of skills, then you have better chances of succeeding faster:
- Sales / marketing / business development
- Finance management and
- Strategy / planning
That’s it for this mistake. I hope it made sense and remember, founders are for business and they could be your friends, but not your friends that could be for business.
p.s: you can still hang out with your friends after work, that is if you find time to have a life (evil smile).