Entrepreneurship · Project management

Development of an idea: Should you hire or not?

Shamim Hasan CEO at Xpart Solutions

October 6th, 2016

You have a great idea. But you don’t know programming. You have two choices: hire a developer or learn programming.

Hiring a developer has risk of idea being stolen. What if a developer realizes what exactly it is all about.

A great idea is 1% of the work. Execution is the other 99%. In this course, we’ll teach you how to conduct market analysis, create an MVP and pivot (if needed), launch your business, survey customers, iterate your product/service based on feedback, and gain traction quickly.

Stephanie Wagner Founder at Agile Bloom, LLC

October 6th, 2016

You could have them sign an NDA if you are that worried.

The developer will probably be more concerned about what is in it for them. Can you pay them and give them a fair amount of equity? If you can't pay them, you'll probably have to give them enough equity to basically make them a co-founder.

Also, you'll have to show what you can offer to the table. You want the developer to trust you as much as you want to trust them. Are you able to follow through with the idea and handle all the non-technical aspects of making the idea a successful company? Sales, marketing, etc.

Tom DiClemente Management Consulting | Interim CEO/COO | Coach

October 6th, 2016

Consider this - if you cannot trust a developer that has the skills you need and good references, how are you ever going to trust everyone else you will need to hire to reach your goals. Many on the team will be exposed to your IP including those reserved as trade secrets.

Also consider, if you don't know programming, how will you be able to learn to program without causing serious delays. Sure, you can learn basic programming but that is no where close to creating a commercially viable app. And the basics don't necessarily qualify you to develop a clean, streamlined app without vulnerabilities.

Contract out the development. Make sure you have a detailed statement of work, a contract including indemnifications by the programmer, and NDAs with anyone who will work with your IP.

Many, many entrepreneurs have taken this route very successfully.

Pauljames Dimitriu Engineer at SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific

October 6th, 2016

Sometimes, it may behoove you to find a developer who shares your vision of your product and may want to build it with you. No matter what you do, you will have to give up a little of your idea so it can be properly implemented.

Sebastien Mirolo CEO DjaoDjin inc.

October 7th, 2016

Always learn programming, a little, if just to understand the words being thrown around.

I would never worry of the idea being stolen. The major risk of any startup is to find someone, anyone, to care enough to spend even 30min just to listen to you. Pick up the phone. Focus on reducing that risk first.

If I was building some very technical patent-rich product like a Virtual Reality Headset, it is different but I am not sure how I would do it without understanding the in-and-outs of the technology.

Joseph Wang Chief Science Officer at Bitquant Research Laboratories

October 6th, 2016

If it's an idea that can be stolen by a programmer, then it wasn't a very good idea to begin with.

Rod Abbamonte Co Founder at STARTREK / @startupHunter / @startupWay / @CoFounderFound / @GOcapital / @startupClub / @lastminute

October 7th, 2016

The best is to see working together a CEO and CTO as Co Founders.

Eric Lentz Business Improvement Through Software Application Development

October 6th, 2016

You should search founderdating for some similar questions. This has been discussed a lot and there are a lot of good answers. What you need to recognize though is that developers are very creative people, as apparently you are. Ideas are very easy to come by. What is not easy to come by is implementation, marketing and the sheer force that is required to move an idea uphill enough to get traction and make money. It is not easy.

There is at least 20 years of the Internet and developers writing great software, marketing it and making money. The Internet is flooded with offerings. If a developer tries to take your idea and run with it, the odds of him/her being successful are perhaps less than yours because if they are any good at programming, that's their first love, not bringing products to market. Chances are, they will lose interest, move on to another shinny object and give up on your idea. After all, it was your idea, not theirs and programmers tend to love their ideas far above that of other people's.

Anyway, my advice: Don't hire. Outsource and get the bare minimum to launch something useful that you think you can market. That's called a MVP (Minimum Viable Product). You will learn from marketing this and that will enable you to bring something to market that people want or you will find out that your idea isn't as good as you thought.

If you have a budget and want help, reach out to me. I help people like you and I have a bunch of my own ideas. I guarantee you, I don't want yours. I'm way too busy going after my own dreams and working for my clients; people like you.

Good luck!

Rod Abbamonte Co Founder at STARTREK / @startupHunter / @startupWay / @CoFounderFound / @GOcapital / @startupClub / @lastminute

October 10th, 2016

Learn and hire a Tech Co Founder.

Donald Steward Owner, Problematics LLC

October 6th, 2016

Eric: True, 'Ideas are easy to come by.' But good, unique ideas can make all the difference in the world, and they may not be easy to come by. 

Irina Suprun Business Development Manager – TestFort

October 10th, 2016

My advice you to sign an NDA before sharing the confidential parts of your ideas with anyone. When both parties agree to a Non-Disclosure Agreement, they are agreeing to do their part in keeping information confidential. This information can be some project requremnts, specification, design, etc. Parties that breach this agreement are subject to legal recourse for any damages caused by the leak.