It has now been over 5 years since I launched MoneyGeek. During those years, I’ve experimented with a lot of different product/feature ideas.
A minority of those ideas bore fruit, and they have given me the impetus to keep going today. Starting this blog, for example, has proven to be very worthwhile as it has allowed me to connect t with some fantastic people.
Other initiatives, however, have failed to meet my expectations. One such initiative is the site saevis.com. I created that site a couple of years ago with the hopes that it would attract more and more visitors over time. But for whatever reason, that traffic has never materialized, and it currently only averages 4 visitors a day.
I’ve learned a lot through my successes and failures. I now have a better understanding of what people want, and how to get the word out about a new product. I also have a better understanding of my own strengths and weaknesses, which brings me to the topic I want to discuss.
Over the past few months, I’ve been exploring an idea that’s an evolution of MoneyGeek. I have the tech talent to create this new site, but I’ve realized that I would also need good interpersonal skills to achieve success. Unfortunately, this is not my strong suit, so I’ve decided to look for someone who does have strengths in this area - in other words, a “business cofounder”. The following are a few areas that I’m looking for help in.
Business Cofounder Tasks
First, I want the cofounder to develop relationships with influencers (bloggers, well known researchers, etc) and persuade them to partner with us. Just to clarify, I don’t want the cofounder to enter us into partnerships where all the advantages accrue to us. Rather, I want the cofounder to construct win-win propositions which open the door for long term collaborations. It’s important to me that the cofounder shares that mindset.
Second, I want the cofounder to try to really understand the customer. That means talking to customers, looking at analytics to understand their behaviour, conducting surveys, etc. I want the cofounder to devise new product features and marketing strategies based on that deep understanding.
Third, I want the cofounder to generate enterprise sales leads. I believe the new site I’m developing has a lot of potential to be adopted by bigger companies. I’d like the cofounder to contact potential customers and maintain positive and mutually beneficial relations with them.
Fourth and last, I want the cofounder to look for new sources of funding. This could involve raising money from angel investors or venture capital, but it could also involve tapping government resources. The cofounder would also take the lead in delivering presentations and maintaining other types of communications with outsiders.
There are probably other areas where I could use help that I haven’t outlined above. The cofounder should be prepared to get his/her hands dirty, even if the task at hand is not necessarily easy or enjoyable. But I believe the tasks I mentioned will be the main areas of concern for the cofounder.
Business Cofounder Criteria
In addition to being good at communication and interpersonal relationships, I’m looking for someone who fulfills the following criteria:
First, I’m looking for someone who has had experience in a startup before. They don’t necessarily have to have been the founder or CEO, but they have to have had the chance to make significant decisions in the startup.
The reason I insist on this criteria is because running a business is just like any other skill - you only get better at it through lots of practice. I’ve paid my dues earlier on in my entrepreneurial journey, having fallen on my face a few times. I want someone who has gone through their own beginner mistakes, so as to maximize our chances of success.
Second, I’m looking for a voracious reader. This criteria stems from my simple observation about successful entrepreneurs. Regardless of whether they’re famous entrepreneurs that everybody knows, or entrepreneurs of small but growing businesses that I personally know, they all seem to share the trait of being voracious readers.
The more I read, the more I appreciate just how important reading is. To succeed in business, you need to be good at quite a few different areas - sales, marketing, finance, hiring, leadership and technology, just to name a few. Being poor in any one of these areas can significantly hamper, if not doom your business. But it’s very hard to be good at any of these areas if you don’t at least know about them. Reading helps you fill these knowledge gaps.
Third and last, whoever joins me will have to agree with the mission of my company, which is to help investors make better decisions. Agreeing to this mission will restrict us from pursuing some potentially lucrative activities. For example, it would restrict us from promoting cryptocurrencies, even though doing so could generate publicity and could also be lucrative.
I expect that few people will satisfy these criteria, so I expect my search for a cofounder to take a long time, which brings me to the reason I’m blogging about this.
I’ve found that the people who visit this blog tend to be highly intelligent and well connected. Many of you work in big tech companies or are forward thinkers in your respective industries. Therefore, there’s a good chance that you’d know someone who fits these criteria (that person could even be you).
If you know someone, please tell me about that person. If you could make a personal introduction, I’d be even more grateful. You can contact me through this form.
I consider it a privilege to have helped a good number of people over the past 5 years through MoneyGeek. Please help me find a good business cofounder, so I can help more people.