Impact sector professionals are some of the most anxious and lonely people in the world. Who can help me develop this product, what is the research available, how do I work on this budget, what are the compliances, the questions and doubts are endless… and we often try to figure it all out on our own.
But what if you had someone to turn to, a friend and a mentor, who can give you expert advice and tips on just about any topic or issue you have?
Starting 2018, Unlock Impact brings you ‘Unlock Answers’, a Q&A section and your own safe space to share, learn and, sometimes, well, vent.
I work in a fashion retail business. I struggled through the first year to manage on my own, but sales have picked up. I still struggle to manage a team of 10, I think the ups and downs are affecting me personally. Should I get a co-founder?
— Confused solopreneur, India
Startup life can be lonely and stressful, especially if you are a solopreneur. Finding a co-founder is a big task. Two questions that you need to ask yourself: First, is there a specific skill set that you lack, and is critical for growing the business? It is critical there is a need for the skills of the person you are planning to bring out.
More importantly, are you truly open to bringing on a partner who will be equal with you on decision-making? Remember, a co-founder or a business partner is a relationship that will need as much TLC as any other relationship. Be sure you are ready to put in the work. Typically, investors do get a bit worried about solopreneurs. They prefer to see teams with complementary skill set. So keep that in mind as well.
I am working on my tech idea, and hope to go into developing my product soon. I’m still working on it part-time, while managing my day job. When is a right time to go full time on my idea?
— Hesitant tech guy, Manila
First of all, congrats on setting off on your entrepreneurial journey. This is a very personal decision – depending on your personal, professional and financial situation. If you have already determined a problem-solution fit, and you have identified a gettable market/paying customers for your product, then it will be good to evaluate if the product and your startup will benefit from your working on it full time. What we can tell you is, once you start building your product, you will need to test and go through many rounds of iteration, including speaking to potential customers. All of this requires time, effort and money. Maybe start with some lean experiments to get initial feedback and then go from there. With every step you move forward, plan meticulously so you have a grasp on resources needed.
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