Where do I find technical co-founder for my startup?
I'm looking for a technical co-founder? where should I look? I've been trying to find someone who is technical and can help me with my startup, but it's been really hard. I've asked all of my friends, but no one seems to be interested or knows how to code. I've looked on Craigslist and other job boards, but I haven't had any luck.
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Starting a business can be a daunting task. It’s even more difficult when you’re doing it alone and you’re not even technical. That’s why it’s crucial to find a co-founder who shares your vision and is equally invested in the success of the company. YCombinator even said that they will not invest in startups that have solo founders.
This might be irrelevant for you if you’re an indie founder and just want someone to push the business with you. It’s more fun together right?
Having a technical co-founder
So why is it so important to have a technical co-founder on board? Here are a few reasons:
1. They can build stuff. dooh. A technical co-founder will be able to build the technology for your company and drive it’s innovation forward. You focus on the business, the CTO focuses on the technology.
2. Helps with customer support. They will understand the technical aspects of your product and be able to troubleshoot any problems that arise.
3. They can be a sparring partner to bounce off ideas. What is feasible? what can we deliver in the next 3 months? etc. They can help you develop a roadmap for your product and ensure it’s on track technically.
4. They can act as a mentor and advisor to other members of the team, teaching them about software development, web design, etc.
Where to find
Here are a few places to look for a potential partner for your venture:
- ProductHunt / Indie Hackers / HackerNews: There are many online communities where indie founders can connect with like-minded people. Never be afraid to share stuff about your plans and journey — right people will notice and contact you if you tell them that you’re building alone but want to have a partner.
- Events / Networking: Networking events are a great way to meet people who might be interested in joining your startup. Attend as many as possible and don’t be afraid to reach out to people you meet. Present your startup as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I mean you’re giving someone the chance to build something amazing from scratch, which is by default awesome.
- Social media: Social media is a great way to connect with potential co-founders from all over the world. Use hashtags or follow relevant people on Twitter. Participate in the conversation and soon you’ll find someone.
- Business Incubators / Accelerators. These programs offer mentorship, resources, and access to a network of potential investors and customers. Usually the level of people involved is quite high and they’re all interested in the startup scene.
- Paid communities. If you’re willing to invest some money, there are a few paid communities that can help you connect with potential co-founders. Join a few Masterminds / Private clubs and again share your journey while telling everyone that you’re looking for someone to join you.
- Reach out to your offline network. Your personal network is a great place to start — previous co-workers, previous employers, previous school mates. Ask your friends, family and colleagues if they know anyone who might be interested in joining your startup. This works wonders.
- Tinder / Bumble. Yeap, that’s also a source of interesting people that might help you out. Companies even use dating apps to recruit new programmers, so why shouldn’t you be able to make some worthwhile connections?
Be clear about your vision. When you’re reaching out to potential co-founders, it’s important to be clear about your vision for the company. Having a clear idea of what you want to achieve will help you attract the right people. An Elevator pitch or a one-pager can give someone a quick understanding if it’s something they’re interested in. If yes, then a longer discussion can take place.
Be patient. Finding the perfect co-founder takes time, so don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t happen overnight. Keep networking and reach out to as many people as possible until you find the right fit.
More questions from users:
Hot! The last couple of years I've been writing about CTO / Tech lead job. I've compiled all my knowledge into a printable PDF. I called it "196 Pages of No Bullshit Guide for CTOs". So if you're interested, take a look.
New! If you're a software engineer looking for a job, I started a Roast my Resume service, where I record a personalized video of me "roasting" your CV, which basically means taking a hard look at your resume as a CTO and commenting on all the good and the bad parts.