How to find startup founders
The best founders:
- Attend startup events: Startup events are a great place to meet founders and learn about their startups.
- Network with other entrepreneurs: Talk to entrepreneurs in your community and see if they know of any promising founders.
- Reach out to universities: Many universities have startup incubators and accelerators that can connect you with talented founders.
- Use online platforms: There are several online platforms where you can find startup founders, such as AngelList and FounderDating.
How to screen startup founders
- Clarity of mission and purpose: The best founders have a clear understanding of why they are starting their company and what they hope to achieve. They are able to articulate their vision in a way that inspires others.
- Deep domain expertise: Founders should have a deep understanding of the problem they are solving and the industry they are operating in. This gives them a competitive advantage and helps them to make better decisions.
- Ability to adapt and learn: The technology landscape is constantly changing, so it is crucial for founders to be able to adapt and learn quickly. They should be willing to experiment and pivot as needed.
- Obsession with the problem: The best founders are obsessed with the problem they are solving. They are constantly thinking about improving their product and reaching more customers.
- Coachability: Founders should be open to feedback and willing to learn from others. They should be able to work with mentors and advisors to take their company to the next level.
- Strong work ethic: Starting a company is hard work. Founders need to be willing to put in the long hours and make sacrifices.
- Integrity and transparency: Founders must be honest and transparent with their team, investors, and customers. This builds trust and credibility, which is essential for success.
- Fairness and reasonableness: Founders must be fair and reasonable in business dealings. This helps to create a positive work environment and attract top talent.
- Love of learning: The best founders are constantly learning and growing. They are curious and open to new ideas.
- Grit and perseverance: Starting a company is challenging, and there will be setbacks along the way. Founders must have the grit and perseverance to overcome these challenges and keep moving forward.
- Entrepreneurial spirit: The best founders have an entrepreneurial spirit. They are driven to succeed and not afraid to take risks.
It is not just about resumes, past accomplishments, or a fancy pitch deck, not even a cool demo that they can show but to
- Ask questions: Ask the founders about their experience, motivation, and vision. What is their track record? What are their goals for the company? Why are they passionate about the problem they are solving?
- Look for passion and determination: The best founders are obsessed with their problems and solutions. They are driven to succeed, no matter what challenges they face.
- Explore their internal conversation about money: Are they open and flexible when spending money (being resourceful)? Do they want to treat themselves and others fairly? Ironically, most startups break up not because of a lack of technology development or progress but because of money conversations amongst founders, employees, or investors. Find out if this is about making a quick $ ( as founders ) or solving a challenging problem that could eventually make money and will be profitable. In today's market, there is a shift from growth and customer traction at any cost economy to building profitable businesses, which fuels the expansion, creates a flywheel of its unit of the economy, and is sustainable.
- References: Talk to the founders' former colleagues, professors, and investors. Get their feedback on the founders' technical skills, business acumen, and leadership abilities.