I never thought I’d find a skilled programmer to work along side with in building my startup. Especially not someone on the Internet.
After dedicating months to trying to learn how to program to build my startup on my own, I finally came to the realization that it was something that wasn’t for me. I preferred to design and handle the business development side of things, and I really couldn’t see myself programming as a full-time commitment.
I needed someone who was just as passionate about programming as I was about designing and marketing. But who?
I really didn’t know anyone who could measure up to the task. I had friends who bragged about the websites they’d built only to realize they set up pre-made wordpress themes and edited a couple of minor details to personalize it (kind of like what this site is).
I tried friends of friends, but no one was up for it because of their personal situations and their own doubts. A lot of them were full-time developers working in their comfy jobs and they just didn’t have enough time to dedicate to the startup. I understood, but at the same time, I was frustrated because I wasn’t getting anywhere.
I was contemplating whether to just plow through some more Django lessons and just build the thing on my own, even though I didn’t enjoy it and was having so much difficulty. All I really wanted was for my idea to come to life, and I thought if that was what it had to come to, then so be it. I also didn’t have the money to spend on tech firms or freelancers, although that would’ve been a great move.
Through it all, I checked Hacker News religiously to get the latest insight and advice on topics related to programming and startups.
I continued learning but just couldn’t build anything remotely close to what I wanted to. I remember the night I was close to giving up, but before I went to bed I spilled all of my thoughts in to a blog post. I vented, complained, and attached a link to the mess of a website that I had built so far.
I ended the post with “If anyone would like to help me continue, just email me”. But who was I kidding? I had 2 or 3 followers of my blogs and they were just friends of mine.
I checked Hacker News before I went to bed that night, and had never dreamed of ever submitting to the site. I thought about it for a second.
I titled the submission “Why Programming Isn’t For Me”, and decided to throw it in. What was the worst that could happen, right?
I woke up the next morning with a massive amount of emails. My blog post had reached the front page, and now programmers were reaching out to me! It was crazy. Some offered straight up that they were available if I needed a technical cofounder and others encouraged me to continue to my efforts.
Through these emails, I developed an unlikely friendship with a programmer who was working in a similar field as me. He made a simple request: if he had any questions regarding business development, he could ask me, and in return I could ask him whatever I needed to about programming.
We were to be mentors of one another. I took up the offer.
Long story short, many phone calls and emails later, we met up and began working together on my original venture. By that time I had trusted him enough and considered him a friend. He was my cofounder, and I had actually found him at one of the most unlikely times and places. It was great though, to know that a strong community like that can really make things happen for a “nobody” like me.
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