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My 2 Co-Founders Are Being Head-Hunted By Apple, Google and Facebook. Advice? (sofamoolah.com)
53 points by MatCarpenter on March 19, 2012 | hide | past | favorite | 18 comments

That's great news. It would be a lot more worrying if you were their last choice for a partnership. Really, count your blessings. And as long as they're being headhunted but they haven't accepted you're in good shape.

It's like dating a very pretty woman. You can worry all the time that she's got lots of suitors and you can destroy your relationship by being jealous of all kinds of things that you imagine might happen or are happening. But the only thing that matters is that you're together and she apparently chose you, even if you're a bit insecure about why it is you over all those other options out there.

That would say more about you than it would about them ;)

Be happy, make them proud and I'm sure they'll make you proud as well.

Yup, and remember, Google, Apple and Facebook are all afraid that all of the smart talent is starting to build companies instead of coming to work for them, so their recruiting is increasing to deal with that.

To continue the analogy, big companies are women(or men if you prefer) in their early 30s worried they are gonna be alone forever. And you, your partners and they are all stuck in a bar that you can never leave.

Getting a call from a headhunter doesn't really mean that much. They are just trying to get someone with a decent resume into the interview pipeline where they will actually be evaluated. I get contacted somewhat frequently by people looking for machine learning devs (including facebook in the past and google quite recently) but there's never any specifics about position, salary, or project. After taking a few calls with headhunters just to see what it was like, I can't imagine someone who is not looking for a job anyway giving them serious attention. It's not a job offer; it's an offer to trudge through their interview process.

The best people always have many opportunities. It's like Joel said in 2006 [1]: the good ones never "hit the market" because they simply pick up the phone and call in the outstanding offers.

Don't fret. View it as validation you've got a good team. For all of you, if your startup is successful the opportunities from Apple, Google and Facebook will only get better. If the startup doesn't go so well, those offers will still be there.

1 http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/FindingGreatDeveloper...

It's a good thing. It means your co-founders already have a bit of job security. With that in mind, you guys are ready to stick together and keep fighting. :)

The only thing worse that having cofounders who big companies are trying to hire is having cofounders who big companies aren't trying to hire.

I think it's a pretty common occurrence. FB came after me a couple of months ago, but truth be told, I wouldn't even be co-founding a startup if I didn't believe in it. It would take a LOT (read: impossible) to woo me away from something I believe in. I suspect most serious co-founders are the same way.

If they're are sure as you are that your idea is going to make it big, they have an incentive to stay rather than go work for Google or Facebook, because they have a lot to gain from something huge. If they don't, you already have a problem, never mind the head hunting, because then they don't really believe in the idea. Then you'll have to incentivize them in the short term with cash probably (ie pay them more than Google or Facebook will), or realize yourself that maybe the idea isn't that good.

Talk to them, ask what they'd do if they got an offer, and then trust them. A good developer will get headhunted fairly commonly, so it's nothing to worry about.

Hopefully they are with you because they would enjoy working on the project and with eachother. If they just want money and a security net then they'll jump ship. Hopefully the community you create with your project is what they want though. Goodluck. :) I'm still trying to find great technical co-founders, and they'll be the type who I'd want to be able to be desired by Apple, Google, etc..

It's all part of the game. If your co-founders are any good at all they should be getting head-hunted.

You just have to keep making sure the idea pushes forward as fast as possible. If it stalls or the idea becomes uninteresting then the easier it will be for them to jump ship.

Comes with the territory.

Ask yourself if you trust your partners. If you trust them, then don't even worry about head-hunters and recruiters. If you do not, then you should not be in the business together anyway.

Get a high fidelity prototype and quickly. Nothing better to keep them interested than a working model.

Only see 2 people mentioned on the site. Is this just a post for traffic?

Warning: another OnSwipe site that crashes mobile browsers.

Let them hand over to youtheir stake in your startup, and find other cofounders / employees.

Being headhunted is not something that you actively go and invite, hence the 'hunted' part of the word. It means that his partners have very little say in that happening, if any at all.

The fact that they've pledged their allegiance to the start-up in question speaks volumes about them and I think your suggestion completely misses the point here.

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