May 5, 2019

Pros and cons for a solo founder

Shun Yamada @shyamady

I'm a solo founder. Because I want to just focus on building all staffs by myself until PMF. I don't want to think anything except for the product. To find co-founder is really tough and exhausting...
So I want to know much more about the pros and cons for solo founders.


  • Fast to move
  • Don't have to take care of any relationships
  • Decision making is easy


  • Hard to brainstorm the ideas
  • Seeing different perspectives is difficult
  • Lonely
  1. 3

    You've hit a lot of the pros, so let me expand on the cons for a moment:

    • If you're headed in the wrong direction, you can waste years of your life (this is your different perspectives point expanded to the effect I have seen it have on solo founders).
    • Smaller skills base. If you're technical, this likely means your company will be terrible at finding, talking to, and selling to customers. (These are extremely important activities.) Even among technical folks, this could mean your front-end (or back-end) is terrible, or that you don't have a mobile app when you should.
    • Smaller network. Having more people on the team means a larger network, which means more potential connections with future customers, word-of-mouth, employees, etc.

    All that said, I wouldn't wait to start until I had a co-founder. But I would definitely be open to one coming on board during the early phases , even pre-PMF.

    1. 1

      Thanks a ton. These cons help me to continue to do my own startup. In the truth, I have broken up Co-founder based startups before. But it never means Co-founder isn't for me. I should learn from the failure of these cases.

  2. 2

    I would agree with all the pros and cons, but caution to reflect on what the goal of your endeavor is? Some people don't make money in real estate because they don't want to potentially have bad tenants. Some people stay line workers because they don't want the headache or managing people.

    This business will be a significant portion of your life. Decide accordingly.

    1. 1

      @troychristmas Thanks for your advice. I'll focus on building a great staff but I'm accustomed to being published on the blogs and twitter.

  3. 2

    I don't remember who said it first but, start ups are a team sport. One thing that I keep having to relearn, and suspect many others have to relearn is that we aren't as smart as we think we are.

    Having someone there to help you when you're struggling, or to provide a good argument against doing something that you think is a sure fire hit will save you untold amounts of time.

    1. 1

      @chuckgreenman Thanks for your comment :) Yead, I agree. The startup is a team sport.

  4. 2

    Don't force it. It's all about the person. If the right person is there go for it. If not don't.

    In making cool stuff yourself first you'll be more likely to attract the right person. It's hard to find a top quality co-founder when you haven't built up a track record. Why would they take a bet on you?

    1. 1

      Absolutely. My belief is to more focus on building. Some founders tend to be careful about finding investors and cofounders before building. Building a great product attracts them!

  5. 2

    Think you already make a few good points. Just to add:


    • You can follow your vision
    • Fulfilling to create something and realize you did that
    • You learn a ton


    • Missing an expert for aspects of the company
    • Tunnel vision (same point I guess as the different perspectives one)
    • If you stop working, nothing happens

    It is really hard to find a co-founder that is not only complementary but also matches with you vision and personality, especially if you have not met them already in some shape or form (hard to judge these things for new relationships). I think working on your product to get it to PMF, or at least to a point where you have really learned a lot, is probably a good bet. Also becomes easier to attract people and attention from that point on.

    All the best with your project, whether you go at it alone or find a partner 🙏


    1. 1

      Totally agree. I build the product, it makes me improve also. But I never built the product for my growth, so I have to decide the way to make the product better every time.

    2. 1

      This comment was deleted a year ago.

  6. 1

    Thanks for any advises! Indie Hackers is awesome!! This community corrects my mistakes always :)