Illustration by Augustė Misiūnaitė

Since the lockdown is not over we have more time to contemplate. Everybody knows that your thoughts go wild while being alone. And in our opinion, this period is perfect for generating some entrepreneurial ideas which could lead to an innovative and cool startup. But if you decided to create something please consider that business is just like life – it is good to have a companion by your side who understands you and shares your vision and passion. So it would be cool to have a partner which would help you to make your idea live. And yeah, finding that person is not the easiest quest. But please keep reading and you will find some steps on how to find a co-founder for your startup.

Creating a co-founder persona and networking like your life depends on it

If you ever had crafted a marketing strategy you probably had defined a buyer persona. If you haven’t we will explain how it is done. You create some fictional, well-detailed characters which describe your perfect customer and helps you to decide the communication and sales strategies and craft a more relevant product or service.

Here is a survey which would help you to think about relevant skills for your co-founder

Food for your thoughts

We suggest taking a hard look at your own business strengths and weaknesses and writing down what partner skills and experiences would best complement yours. While trying to find a co-founder for your startup you need to define your needs carefully because being able to code Python or animate some cool stuff is not everything. Soft skills matter too. For having a smooth MVP development process time management and communication is vital and it should not be forgotten while defining that person. When you are done there comes the fun part- networking. You have to network to find co-founders just as hard as you would network to find investors. Because passionate and hard-working persons are an asset which is kinda hard to find. And yes, it would be easy to look for it in your friends and family pool but remember that you are looking for the most competent and not the easiest to find person. But nowadays it is possible to find one. Here is how. First of all, a large community on the internet helps to find a co-founder for your startup very well. Join entrepreneur groups on LinkedIn and Facebook, and interact with people who meet your criteria on Twitter. There you can reach a lot of like-minded individuals who probably are looking for some opportunities. Also, Meetup provides a huge list of meetups sorted by topics. So no matter if you are looking for an experienced developer or business development guru this platform provides an opportunity to have access to these individuals and have an opportunity to make a connection with them. Also do not forget business conferences and entrepreneur forums. It is also helpful. And when you succeed to find one consider that it is more than skills. You have to trust each other.

Trust and values matter

As we told earlier the quest to find a co-founder for your startup is an uneasy task. Crafting some enterprise is the same as growing a child. So the process of finding your entrepreneurial spouse should be well monitored in the field of trust between you two and your values. Running a business can present many opportunities for people to do dishonest things. Co-founders can act in a way that causes others to question the ethics of a company or permanently damages the company. So there is no doubt that your partner should be responsible and trustworthy. Also, do not let a person who is abusive or a control freak in your business. Does not matter if it is making decisions without getting agreement from other team members or using manipulation, this type of person will do whatever it takes to get their way. And that is a toxic way to run a company. Find someone who is honest. Communicate up-front that there is an expectation for 100 percent honesty at all times — no exceptions. Remember, finding the right partner isn’t just about skills: It’s also about character. One thing to mention: do not look for a “sheep” who tries to please everyone. In business right decisions are not the pleasant ones. Sometimes you need to do what you got to do. And persons who always try to please everyone could lead your startup to failure. Also do not forget to search for a person with emotional stability. It involves the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. Every owner needs to be able to maintain her cool in the face of the rough times that are common in the startup environment. And yes, we know that employees or co-workers can sometimes really piss you off. But no matter what, you should look for a person that stays cool, because it helps to prevent your working environment from becoming toxic.

It is hard, but it is worth it

Yeah, it is hard to find a co-founder for your startup, we do not gonna lie. It is tremendously hard to see all the personal properties of a person and it also takes time. But remember that your startup is like your kid and you need to raise it wisely. And it is way easier to do it not alone. Remember, that you are not perfect and a person who fulfills you could help to raise your idea from some sketches and notes to a unicorn.

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