16 Questions to Ask Your Potential Co-Founder

Few founders working together.

You are meeting your dream potential co-founder after reading through their resumes and portfolios. Now what? Kickstart a meaningful conversation to get to know them and your company better! Asking the right questions helps you to identify a potential co-founder or to sift out red flags that you come across.

Here are some important questions to ask your potential co-founder, and a helpful tip is to make sure that you answer them yourself first - it comes in handy for when you match your expectations with your potential co-founder’s!

On Vision & Motivation

  • Why are you interested in joining this startup?
  • What are your short-term and long-term goals for the startup?
  • What motivates you to pursue this startup in this field / area?

On Skills & Experience

  • Do you have any prior experiences in similar startups or companies?
  • What have you learnt from prior startup (or similar) experiences, if any?
  • What are your expertise, strengths, and weaknesses?
  • What are the areas / roles you would like to take up in the startup and your contribution?

On Commitment

  • How committed are you to seeing this startup succeed, and what sacrifices are you willing to make?
  • What level of time and effort can you realistically dedicate to the startup, considering your other commitments?
  • How do you plan to balance your commitments to ensure the success of the startup?
  • What do you anticipate the workload to be like in the initial stages of the startup, and how do you plan to manage it?
  • Are you comfortable with potentially long hours and high-pressure situations as we build the company?

On Ownerships

  • What are your expectations regarding ownership and equity distribution within the startup?
  • How do you envision making decisions about ownership and equity as the company grows?

On Finances

  • What financial resources or connections can you bring to the startup?
  • How do you feel about taking financial risks for the success of the venture?

All in all, these are just some helpful prompts to kickstart your chat with your potential co-founder! Take the conversation one step further when you discuss your expectations. Be open-minded when going into conversations like this, it will not only help you to better understand your needs and standards for a co-founder, but also to comprehensively get to know your future business partner!

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