While a technical founder is often critical to the initial momentum of a start-up, and the creation of a product, there are plenty of important roles for the non-technical founder.
Sales and marketing strategy are integral to creating a successful start-up. Building leads for sales, setting up a work method, networking and finding contacts in the industry, and spearheading advertising efforts are all key! In addition, networking and building relationships with investors is critical. This is something the non-technical founder can play a major role in. Business development will lead to success.
Working to create a more distinct and detailed vision. This is something that is critical to moving a start-up forward. If the idea and product are promising there is much to explore in terms of how to further define the product and the “culture” surrounding it. Of course, all founders should discuss the vision, but this is definitely an area where the non-technical founder can take initiative.
Copywriting/storytelling. What does this mean? The company must have a story. The customers, the investors, all of the people and parties that are interacting with the start-up must have a strong notion of what it stands for and what it is trying to create. The non-technical founder can take the lead in drafting emails and other important written materials that will help relay the start-up’s values and visions. If the non-technical founder does not feel up to this kind of work, it is something that should be outsourced to someone that loves to write.
Research! Someone needs to tackle what is out there in terms of competition. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer! Having a good handle on the other companies that are doing similar work and creating similar products will allow you to pinpoint differences and capitalize on them.
Office cheerleader! The administrative work in the office of a new start-up is just as important as anything else. Without organization and follow up with anyone that is involved in moving the company forward it is difficult to get anything done. This is work that the non-technical founder can take care of. In addition, some morale boosting is always good too! Keep the office energetic, enthusiastic and positive. When the technical co-founder is busy solving and focusing on the smaller-picture issues, the non-technical founder can keep an eye on the bigger picture and how to direct the company in the larger sense.
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