Introducing New Features: Status Updates and the Compatibility Score Gauge

CoFoundersLab is constantly evolving to help our entrepreneur users find the perfect co-founders and advisers.  Recently we launched two new features that we think will make your search much, much easier:

Status Updates: You can now provide Status Updates that are broadcast to all the people who Favorited you.  With 140 characters, these new Status Updates are a great way to keep your prospects excited about joining you.  Share any news that demonstrates progress such as product validation, customers, and Matchups you plan to attend.  To broadcast an update, go to Settings > Promote Yourself > Status Updates.  Go ahead and give it a shot!

Check out the new Compatibility Score Gauge that Pro Members see on candidates' profiles!

Check out the new Compatibility Score Gauge that Pro Members see on candidates' profiles!

Compatibility Score Gauge: One of the great benefits of a CoFoundersLab Pro Membership is the Compatibility Score visible on both Pro and non-Pro Members' profiles.  Now, it’s even easier for Pro Members to see how they fit in with other entrepreneurs through our new Compatibility Score Gauge.  Become a Pro Member and see how you mesh with your favorite candidates today!

It Takes a Village to Raise a Startup: Board of Directors versus Advisors versus Mentors

This is a guest post by Danny Boice, the Co-Founder & CTO of Speek - a funded startup that let's users do conference calls with a simple link (speek.com/YourName) rather than using phone numbers and PINs.

 

My startup Speek is fixing crappy conference calls for people all over the world.  We recently announced a $5.1 million Series A from the likes of 500 Startups, Edward Norton and a slew of other high profile investors. Our star-studded advisory board consists of Edward, the founders of Nextel, the founders of AddThis and the former Sr. VP, Corporate Development from Sprint.

In talking with younger startup founders I often note that their lines of delineation between founders, board directors, advisors and mentors are often skewed.  I credit a significant portion of Speek’s success thus far with us very effectively building and leveraging a curated and high quality group of advisors and mentors specifically.  In this article I’m going to school you on how we pulled this off and what our derived value is from each respective group.

How I Found a Technical Co-Founder by Learning to Code

This is a guest post by Michael Thomas, the head of inbound marketing at Highfive, a startup backed by Andreessen-Horowitz, Google Ventures and some of the top investors in Silicon Valley.

 

The majority of successful startups got where they are today because they had an amazing team. There have been a few notable solo founders, like Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Pierre Omidyar of eBay, but for the most part great companies are founded by teams. But building that team isn’t always so straightforward. If you are young, like I was when I started my first company, you likely won’t have a large network or know people with complementary skills required to complete a “Golden Triangle.”

CoFoundersLab City Expansion

What an amazing ride so far! Sometimes it’s easy to focus on only what is being worked on at the moment, but thanks to a recent tweet from Jason Calacanis, we were inspired to review and graph out what our expansion efforts looked like over the last 3 years.

Wow!

We were amazed when looking back at how much we’ve grown in such a short timeframe. It has been an amazing ride so far, and only possible thanks to our community of members, volunteers, and partners. A BIG thanks to them!

At CoFoundersLab, we’re inspired every day by helping people come together to form better founding teams faster!  

Onward.


- Erick Brimen
COO & VP Finance, CoFoundersLab

Matching up Michigan Entrepreneurs

There is a lot of exciting entrepreneurial activity going on in Michigan right now, and we're very excited to help Michigan entrepreneurs build stronger founding teams faster.  To that end, we've partnered with the University of Michigan's Zell Lurie Institute on a co-branded portal that will help better connect the entrepreneurs across the different schools on campus, as well as with alumni.  The portal also helps connect the University of Michigan community with other entrepreneurs outside of the university community.  

University of Michigan.jpg

We're also excited to launch our first Detroit Matchup event at Grand Circus on March 19th! Grand Circus, a newly dubbed Google Tech Hub, is a great space and community in downtown Detroit that seeks to elevate the local tech community through training, co-working, and events. We're excited to work together with Grand Circus to help them achieve this goal, and we look forward to holding events here on a quarterly basis going forward.   

You can read more about our University of Michigan partnership and Detroit Matchup launch event in this press release here.

 

CoFoundersLab now matching interns with founders

Startup internships are on the rise, and we think that’s great for interns and founders alike. Interning at a startup offers interns lots of benefits including:

  • A chance to make a real impact and watch your efforts materialize quickly.

  • Experience a wide variety of projects and develop a wide range of skills. Sometimes interning with larger, more established companies may require more routine functions.

  • It’s a great way to try out a startup and prove yourself if you’re part of the 54% of millennials who want to launch or be part of a startup.

Startup founders, especially pre-funded ones, often don’t have the luxury of hiring full-time staff. Hiring an intern is a great way for a founder to get the additional help he or she needs without breaking the bank.

Negotiating With Startup Equity Alligators

This is a guest post by Mike Moyer.  Mike is the author of several books, including Slicing Pie, a book about dividing up equity in early-stage companies.

 

You, the marketing whiz, and your friend, the technology rock star, decide to go into business together and spend the next three weeks planning hunkered down in a coffee shop chugging triple-venti, sugar-free, non-fat, no-foam, extra-caramel, Caramel Macchiatos. Sooner or later the conversation is going to turn to ownership and equity. You might be tempted to split the equity “50/50,” after all what could be more fair than that?

Your 50/50 split is known as a “fixed split” and it could doom the company to failure. Fixed splits are rarely, if ever, fair because they usually do not reflect actual contributions to the company’s success and they never accommodate changes. What if, for instance, you work on the project full time and your partner keeps a day job? Or what if you want to hire a marketing assistant? Do you give him your equity? Does your partner pitch in? Why should she? It’s your assistant after all. Welcome to your first equity renegotiation.