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oz 676 days ago | link | parent

I'm really wondering if your post is sarcasm. But I'll bite. To wit:

>A real developer who loves his project would never outsource major aspects of the project.

Excuse me, but that's just the 'No True Scotsman' fallacy. You don't get to decide what makes someone a 'real developer. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_true_Scotsman

>while dealing with IMPORTANT issues such as database architecture, setting up the server, etc.

The primary focus of the founder should be to get paying customers. These paying customers could care one iota about Codd's 12 Rules, 3NF, and Chef/Puppet configuration. If you truly believe that those things are more important than getting paying customers, then you, my friend, have a hobby, not a business. The IMPORTANT thing is "getting them to sign on the line which is dotted." Not mucking about at the CLI.

>To suggest that you want to concentrate on the "business aspect" simply means that you don't want to do the hard part. By outsourcing, the article states: "I have more time and I can spend this time for marketing and blogging". ... Right. Because blogging and marketing is so very tough?

Sigh. The common engineers fallacy of thinking that creating is enough. It is not. Steve Jobs was a salesman. And I can assure you that marketing is not as simple as throwing up a wordpress blog and a facebook page. It takes real work. Which I suspect you would know if you'd ever done it.

HN: You don't get rich by agonizing over data structures and algorithms (unless you're Google). You get rich by leveraging resources so the multiplier effect works to your advantage. If the most efficient path to getting paying customers is to outsource, then do so. Kudos to OP.

</rant>



balloot 676 days ago | link

None of this addresses the fact that the author has set up his company such that the person doing the marketing/blogging/sales/etc has zero experience doing any of those things. By attempting to do them himself the author is completely disregarding their value!

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aymeric 676 days ago | link

I find harder to outsource marketing and blogging than outsourcing software development. This is why it made sense for me to do it myself. For example, I don't know if I could have found a writer that could have written an article that has brought 16000 readers so far.

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xpose2000 676 days ago | link

Excellent viewpoint. The business aspect and getting paying customers is important. A marketers job is important as well. I don't mean to step on toes. However, keep in mind that the author of this post refers to himself as a developer.

It's like Steve Jobs saying he is a great salesman but wants to outsource selling his vision. It makes no sense to me.

Therefore that is why I wrote what I wrote.

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oz 676 days ago | link

Thank you. However:

>author of this post refers to himself as a developer.

It doesn't matter what he calls himself. If you can pass FizzBUzz, you're a developer. Maybe not a John Carmack, but a developer nonetheless.

There is no sacred law written on tablets of stone and handed down from volcanic mountains that states "Developers who found startups must code or face eternal damnation." Rather, there is a holy precept that does state "The founder (whether a dev, UX guy or bizev guy) shall find the most efficient path to profitability, or be condemned to the lake of failure."

So if a founder is from a UX background, but in his particular context, it is more efficient (faster to profitability) for him to outsource the UX and read 'MBA for Dummies', I would argue that that is the rational course of action.

Again: Your priorities as a founder are not whatever background you are from. Your priority (and you must accept it :)) is to become profitable. When that is achieved, THEN you can go up the Maslow Heirarchy of business-actualization.

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balloot 676 days ago | link

Again, you are repeating this idea that all these other non-coding skills can be mastered on a whim. If you truly need an MBA type doing MBA things for your company, then you should go get one. Lord knows there's a zillion of them out there, almost all of which have a better resume than "I read MBA for dummies".

Or to put this differently. If I was working for some larger company as a developer, and I went to management and said "I have decided that I want to quit development and work in marketing", they would turn me down. And rightly so, because A) it would be bad for the company to lose my development skills, and B) there is no reason to hire me as a marketing person when there's many more out there far more qualified and experienced in marketing.

So...if this would be quite clearly the correct course of action if I worked for someone else, why would I not follow the same thought process for my own company?

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skrish 676 days ago | link

I disagree. IMHO, there is no better person than the founder to market your startup passionately.

I am not saying MBA skills are not valuable. But what is more important is ability to write pithy blogs, write tons of emails to your potential customers, investors and do lot of other routine activities to keep your startup afloat. None of this requires MBA as such in the initial days.

Your passion, reading some of the best blogs out there on specific topics is more than enough provided you take all the advice as just that 'advice' and tweak it to apply as per your situation & needs.

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aymeric 676 days ago | link

> IMHO, there is no better person than the founder to market your startup passionately.

Exactly my feelings.

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aangjie 676 days ago | link

Others have put this differently. But my experience working at a startup before and watching both the founder and marketing manager tells me there's a difference in startups. Atleast the one i was at. The founder had a vision that was pretty impossible to transfer to someone with all the nuances and subtle differences. And when someone(experienced too) else was marketing, he missed out/dropped out all those subtle differences, and was just practicing his Always Be closing principle. Maybe all startups don't have the same quality/problem. Maybe some startups are very fine calculated risks, that can and do manage to transfer/communicate their vision easily.

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