Finding the right co-founder is really hard

Ryan Connaughton
14 replies
So I've been on the search for a co-founder for what seems like the longest time now. I know Y-combinators stance is "partner up with someone you met at college or already have a long standing relationship with". While that would be the safest/ideal route, unfortunately, this isn't really an option for some people and so I've been blocked on that front for some time. That said, I've just dry launched to try to address that problem. The intent is to the match people up based on things that each founder cares about, minimising the risk that you inherit with meeting someone new and putting an end to endless time-consuming profile scrolling/lengthy events etc. For those that are currently on the hunt for a co-founder or perhaps just have a min or two to give any feedback at all - would much appreciate! :) Dropping link here: Cheers and have a great day.


David Flynn
Hey man, this is super cool! Cofounders are so important and networking hasn't been the same during COVID. What type of data points are you matching your users on?
Ana Bibikova
Congrats with your launch Ryan. It's definitely a challenging task for many founders and it's exciting to see new solutions to this pain point emerging now and then. Would you please be so kind to share how your matching algorithm work? Do you match manually? Do you use AI? Do you match based on interests? Or also location and background?
Ryan Connaughton
Thanks for the feedback guys. In terms of the algorithm, I've been matching people manually to test the waters while also working on a simple algorithm as MVP (what skillsets they're looking for and location IF thats also important to them) Following an MVP, my thinking is I can vet harder with more in-depth data collection (personality types, values, problems spaces of interest etc.). Of-course this will require a much deeper user-research/spike piece first before I can get to the right solution. In addition, and as Alejandro points out, there can only be so much 'filtering/vetting' you can do before you have to get some hard validation that this is the right person - that being, actually working together. So assuming that I can get the pre-requesties above right and theres interest, I think theres then potential of guided mini-hackathon style projects or some kind of 'trials'. Worst case scenario: you meet someone new, learn some stuff, give eachother feedback for you to grow and have fun building something. Best case scenario: all of the above + the problem/solution holds water and/or you form a continued lasting relationship.
Mr Ethar Alali
@ryanconnaughton A bit of constructive feedback. The worst case scenario is actually that you meet completely the wrong person, who doesn't pull their weight as a co-founder, while they go on to do a day job and you invest 100% of your time in the partnership. Since you lose out, they don't. This is particularly the case with people claiming they can sell. So it's definitely not an ideal scenario and one that would also do well to address.
Ryan Connaughton
@ryanconnaughton @ethar_alali Agree setting expectations upfront (or matching on that criteria) and some kind of accountability/reputation metric would potentially need to be baked in for that problem - food for thought that I'll take away with me and explore further, thanks!
Mr Ethar Alali
@ryanconnaughton @ethar_alali indeed. I did blog about this once (from the technical co-founders perspective - as a bit of advice for them). This comment will get collapsed if I post it. However, if you want to read it, let me know and I'll post it. It just means you have to search for the collapsed comment.
Ryan Connaughton
Cool I'll check it out - whats your blog link?
Depends on the person though. For me getting a job is harder because when I say I do dev and social media marketing. They are like "pick one, you can't do either." But these skills make me a reasonably good cofounder but promises of success don't pay the rent.
Tarek Dajani
I am in that stage right now, I am just thinking of closing the subject and not getting a co-founder. The problem is I am a non-technical co-founder, but for me getting a bad a co-founder would be worse than me being a non-technical solo founder. Maybe, I can just a get 2-3 devs give them a good share amount and that would be better. Tertle looks nice and very much helpful, I signed up. Good luck.
Paul Woodthorpe
I always find that when people talk about co-founders they really mean investor. And that is not always the case. I had a proven business idea that only a couple of companies were doing, but didn't have the technical skills to develop it. I ended up talking to a developer on a business forum. 2 years later we have worked on my idea and it is going well. It all just comes down to matching skill sets.
Del Rent
How is your product different than Shapr?