Fred Wilson: One mistake I see people make is that they hire out the development of the technology… I think companies need to have the engineers as part of the core founding team and they need to be all working out of the same room and working together and committed for the long-haul. A company needs to own its engineering and product, in a way that you could never own it if you hired someone else to build it.”

I can never emphasize enough the importance of this when discussing online development and startups. To understand the nature of building online services, to really get to “feel for” and understand the product, one has to build it itself. I don’t say one has to do every little thing inhouse, but one must own the product development. Too much information, feedback and all the invaluable iterative innovation process gets lost if outsourcing the core product development.

Frankly, not seeing any devs in the room makes me worried. Having worked as deputy CTO myself, the first person I love to talk to is the CTO. To be able to execute the whole team needs to be in sync. Whether that’s true becomes quite obvious if the CTO and the rest of the team don’t have the same understanding, i.e. aren’t talking about the same product.

Thus, it goes without saying, if you’re startup looking for investors, make sure you have techies in your core founding team.

Fred also brings up two more key advice for startups:

  • Keep it simple, don’t try to solve the entire problem day one. 
  • When pitching, engage your audiende within the first 30 seconds and SHOW something live and breathing.

Watch it, it’s worth all six minutes!


You might also wanna check out NYC 3.0 to read more about NYC tech startup community.

Image Credit, Flickr CC: Paula Marttila

Find out more About Me and fellow Top 100 Women in Tech in Europe. Connect with me on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or just drop me a line! Subscribe to my Feed, Startup Advice, and Swedish Startups Twitter list. And remember, “You never learn anything when you speak, only when you listen” – Roelof Botha / Douglas Leone, Sequoia Capital

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