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How to find the right co-founder

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Jun 14, 2012

Success is largely a complementary issue. None of great companies before us is a single handed creation. They are team game, at least of two people at the beginning. Having a great co-founder on whom you can rely on is indispensable for start-up success.

Here goes 3 practical tips on finding right co-founder:

Look for complementary skills:
Jessica Alter of FounderDating.com says: "look for someone whose skill set is opposite yours, but is culturally similar to you. And don’t get so excited that you prematurely jump in without doing a project together first". Complementary issues can go beyond the only skills. It can be even capital too. If you have a gorgeous idea but no money then you can take someone as co-founder who has capability to invest. However, have a working experience together before starting together.

Passion comes first: (Cue in: Founders at work: Love is the lord)
Passion is no more a western idea. Moreover, in a start-up where money has very short supply what keeps everybody alive is passion. Judging one’s passion for an idea, dedication for a journey and determination for achieving certain goal is important before adding him on board. In any start-up most of the time passion rules. Ask some very basic questions when he/she agrees to work with you, i.e. why she wants to work with you? How she can contribute to the project? Why she likes the project? What is most important to her about the project? How much time she can give without being paid, etc. you even could better work together to find out more.

Relationship:                                                                                                                                                                            Many of successful entrepreneurs suggested that the relationship between co-founders should be a lot like family. It indicates how intense it should be. A good chemistry between/among co-founders is critical for mutual understanding. Where mutual understanding, similarity of values and trusts among founders have a profound impact on the way they work together and on the future of venture. Prior of starting working together work on your relationship. Mutual understanding, trust, respect, similarity of values and mutual cooperation are few of things founders should keep eyes on to before starting together.


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Ruhul Kader is a technology and business analyst based in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is also the co-founder and CEO of Future Startup and author of Rethinking Failure: A short guide to living an entrepreneurial life. He writes about internet business, strategy, technology, technology policy, and society. He can be reached at ruhul@futurestartup.com

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