Anyone know where I can find a co founder with different skills than mine? I would like like to find someone with experience in fundraising and growing a startup. I'm looking for skilled people to bring on board in order for me and the company to grow.
1) Look up local universities and email the chairperson of whichever programs relate to the type of cofounder you need (i.e. electrical engineering, marketing, etc.). You could even possibly go there in person and put up a sign on a bulletin board.
2) There may be relevant Meetups in your area, go there and network with attendees (www.meetup.com).
3) If you're specifically looking for engineers, look up local 'hacker' / maker spaces that may exist in your area (see here: https://wiki.hackerspaces.org/List_of_Hacker_Spaces).
Send me a message if you want to discuss more options and how to access them,
all the best,
Why do you want a co-founder?
Giving away equity is foolish. Read How To Get Rich by Felix Dennis to find out why if you don't know.
Better to hire someone and pay them a one-time salary.
If you don't have cashflow to pay a salary, you should ask yourself why anyone would want to come work for free, on a wing and a prayer that you're going to be profitable. They have other things to do with a much greater chance of success.
What type of CoFounder do you need? What's his/her role for your team?
I'm all for building a team if that's what you need. NOT having a CoFounder just to say you have one. FORGET that how to get rich nonsense. Investors especially want to see you can get someone else onboard before they take you serious.
I would recommend networking at local startup events. Hackathons are huge for finding tech cofounders. You could source talent at universities and colleges.
Feel free to give me a call for more ideas OR connect with me on LinkedIn 😉
A co-founder is really a necessity these days as there is so much work to do and speed of execution is so important.. that one person on their own is at a real disadvantage.
Combine this with starting a business being really hard with many huge ups and downs.. a co-founder helps bring you up then you're down.
I've built 2 businesses with a co-founder and 2 without and would choose the former EVERY time.
In terms of where to find them, I'd consider a few sources:
1: Contact people you've worked with in some capacity before and got on well with, even if they're in a job (you never know what they're planning to do next)
2: Use Linkedin to find people in companies or with skills you have identified you need and just reach out.
3: Consider joining programs such as Entrepreneur First (www.joinef.com) if you're in the UK - which specialise in taking technical talent and matching them with co-founders before the idea and business is formed.
4: By all means go to startup events and hackathons and network around - although I've never found this an optimal use of time.
Once you've found someone that might fit the bill - suggest you work together on a specific task or project for a few weeks and see how you get on. If you're being productive and enjoying the time together - keep doing it. Else don't be afraid to break it up and try again.. better to have no cofounder than the wrong one.
My favorite place is to go to where the experts hang out - I usually need a co-founder who is an expert in their subject matter, and I take care of everything else.
Best place I've had success with? reddit.
Mind you, I'm no interloper; I've been part of reddit for over 9 years. I just join the relevant subreddits, see what people are seeing, and slowly but surely I figure out who the even-keeled intelligent people are.
I then reach out and take it from there...
There is a great website dedicated to finding a co-founder https://www.cofounderslab.com/.
I am personally a member and have met some very talented people through the site including my co-founder for a project I am working on. It allows you to search for the type of person you need in your start-up based on their particular skills.
Before giving you the practical tips, it is important to first point out that you should be 100% sure that you really do need a co-founder, and that a freelancer or employee is not sufficient. There is a reason that CBInsights found that the third most common reason cited for startup failure is “not the right team” and that the most common agreement that I draft as a startup lawyer/mentor is a ‘separation agreement’ between founders (or should I say ex-founders). In most cases, freelancers/employees can do what you need (perhaps the only exception is having a CTO when trying to raise capital from VC’s – and even this depends on the type of startup).
1. Go to networking events - some of which are dedicated to “co-founders dating/matching” - try Meetup.com for this.
You can also try www.founderdating.com and www.cofounderslab.com
2. Take part in chats in relevant forums (depending on the type of co-founder you’re looking for).
3. Consider joining accelerator/incubator programs for startups/entrepreneurs - some of them connect between founders.
4. Contact head of programs at universities and tell them what you’re looking for. Today, many universities and cities have startup programs with a lot of talented participants (or speakers) who might be the perfect co-founder for you.
5. Talk to friends and family and let them know that you’re looking. This helps expand your network. Post a message on www.LinkedIn.com .
I've successfully helped over 300 entrepreneurs. I'd be happy to help you. Good luck