Earlier this year, my Co-Founder Stevan Litobac and I began the exciting process of relocating our currency comparison site, MyCurrencyTransfer.com , abroad. We strategically chose Tel Aviv and what started as a temporary three-month relocation, has ended up being the home of our first international office. Why Israel? Our research showed the ‘Startup Nation’ to be an international hub of entrepreneurship & home to thousands of ambitious startups. Not to mention, the weather is fantastic & hummus delicious.
In this post, I am excited to share how we first met & pass on some hopefully useful tips on finding the right Co-Founder.
We met online
Stevan and I met on an online entrepreneur list that helps potential Co-Founders connect. It was an extraordinary piece of luck to find eachother, as most on this specific list were entrepreneurs looking to start a business in San Francisco or New York. There were a handful from London, and only one in my area: Stevan!
If you are thinking of finding your next business partner & haven’t thought of anyone that immediately springs to mind, my advice would be to try looking online! Often, looking outside your friends & family will enrich the process by forcing you to network with the types of people you may never otherwise have been able to connect with.
Do we have any friends in common? Who can I ask for references? Could I see myself working with this person all day, every day? These are some of the questions you should be answering during the ‘courting’ process, prior to signing on the dotted line. Stevan and I met no fewer than six times before we decided to go into business together. Take your time. Even though you may have collaboratively come up with the killer idea for your startup, it pays to take your time. I am certain that many potential success stories have ended up failing due to founder fueds. Don’t let this happen – take a step back and consider trust signals.
Identify your weaknesses
I was looking for a tech co-founder and Stevan was looking for someone to handle more of the commercial activities of his prospective startup. It was a natural fit. A strong team of co-founders should contain a balance of skills that is not too top heavy either on the commercial or tech front. When money is tight & there are many projects to complete, being able to keep us much in-house as possible is key.
Enjoy the ride together
Finally, I’d say that establishing a healthy & fun-working relationship with your Co-Founder is key. In the courting phase, consider again whether your future Co-Founder is the type of person you could easily grab a drink & bite to eat with. So too, knowing how to celebrate success and deal with failure is very important. If your Co-Founder has the right persona to also be your friend & confidante, you are well on the way to building great things together.
About the Author: Daniel Abrahams is the Managing Director of My Currency Transfer – the world’s leading foreign exchange comparison site helping individuals and businesses find a fairer and cheaper deal on currency.