One of the great misconceptions in working to build a startup from scratch is that you need only be great at one thing – typically product development – and then you can wing and learn the rest.
Why do I think it’s a wrong approach?
First of all, you’re essentially working on a wrong assumption about what’s needed to become really successful. Because just as innovation, product development and delivery takes skill and experience, so do the ‘boring’ business parts.
In essence it may actually be more difficult to build a business than develop a product; when you’re developing a product you can get very far with your own skills (provided they’re good enough), but when you move out into the market, the whole world goes into flux, the interdependencies are huge and the risk as well. And it just takes a pretty steady set of hands to work that infinite space.
Second, you risk spending your time, energy and ressources on the wrong things. If you’re a stellar developer, you should be focusing on development. Full stop. You should now water down and defocus your unfair advantage by taking on tasks, you don’t feel confident in and – lets face it – basically care very little about.
You should leave all those things to people who have the same qualities as yourself – but within the business/market facing aspects of your startup.
In summary, the key message here is that it ALWAYS takes a full team to succeed. And since you cannot by everywhere and bring your A game to every aspect of getting a successful business up and running, make sure that you get A players in all positions and show them faith and trust that they’re capable people who knows what’s needed to be successful.
That’s the best way for you to maximize your chances of success.