I was listening to Guy Kawasaki’s book, The Art of Start 2.0 when he mentioned that the best way to start a company is to provide a service. This way, you will learn what your customers need and what problems they are trying to solve. This resonated with me, as a serial entrepreneur and professor of Computer Science I believe that startups fail because they don’t provide a service that customers are willing to pay for. It has been my experience that the best way to understand customer needs, is to initiate a productive conversation with members of the target market. I was inspired by Guy’s book to learn more about my IoT and AI communities and the problems they are facing. This is where you come into play. I am looking for people who have serious technical problems to submit an application. This is a three-month collaboration with me, where I learn about the challenges you are and, where my skills can be applied, offer a viable remedy.
Why only 3 months?
Three months is enough time to develop a minimum viable product. Three months is also the time that I have during my summer break before the academic year picks up.
Why only 100 bucks, what is in it for you?
I want to discover a real problem, that hopefully, I can solve not only for you but maybe for thousands of other people.
Why ask people to apply?
I am looking to work with a highly competent, motivated and visionary team. Academic pedigree, to me, doesn’t matter as much as grit. So if you think this describes you, please reach out.
What is in the Application?
The application is 10 questions. The first six are designed to identify real problems. And 5 of them were taken from Eric Migicovsky’s talk on “How to Talk to Users”.
Here are the questions:
- Describe the problem that you are trying to solve (I added this one because I need context as I am screening applications)
- What’s the hardest thing about [doing this thing]?
- Tell me about the last time you encountered that problem.
- Why was that hard?
What, if anything, have you done to try to solve the problem?
- What don’t you love about the solutions you’ve tried
There are also 4 yes or no questions about your personality.
The personality questions are:
- Are you organized? (I am not, I am very project focus so multi-tasking and scheduling are not my strong suit. However, I can focus on a single task for hours at a time, this is how I get and stay, in flow.
- Do you have a sense of design and taste for creating beautiful things?
- Do you disagree with something that I wrote in this post? (Don’t want to get paired with a clone)
- Are you friendly (As I write this I know that this is bias, but I only want to work with friendly people.)
Please think deeply about these questions. I will contact my top three choices for screening.
You can be a team or a single person. You don’t need coding experience or any technical experience you just need to bring me a problem that you are trying to solve. If you don’t have a problem, but know someone who might have one. Share this post with them.
When can I apply?
I will be accepting applications on March 17. (No reason for this date I just picked it.)
Here is a link to the google form that you can use to apply. Good luck.