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Is job experience necessary as a tech founder

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Mainstream7

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Do you think job experience in a tech agency/company is necessary to become a tech founder?
I imagine there are many intricacies that can only be learned in a real project with a real team. Learn on the job so to say.

Or is it possible to learn the tech-stack for example and go straight into freelance/building your own company by bootstrapping?

@csalvato @lowtek @srodrigo @eliquid
 

MJ DeMarco

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If your solution solves my problem, I don't care about your prior experience.
 

Kevin88660

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Do you think job experience in a tech agency/company is necessary to become a tech founder?
I imagine there are many intricacies that can only be learned in a real project with a real team. Learn on the job so to say.

Or is it possible to learn the tech-stack for example and go straight into freelance/building your own company by bootstrapping?

@csalvato @lowtek @srodrigo @eliquid
A lot of successful founders did not have.
 

eliquid

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Do you think job experience in a tech agency/company is necessary to become a tech founder?
I imagine there are many intricacies that can only be learned in a real project with a real team. Learn on the job so to say.

Or is it possible to learn the tech-stack for example and go straight into freelance/building your own company by bootstrapping?

@csalvato @lowtek @srodrigo @eliquid

First, anything is possible. So yes, based on that alone it is possible with to be a tech founder without a job or related background.

Second, you only need to solve a problem. Not solve a problem with X background

Third, I built many things just learning the tech stack ( Perl, PHP, SQL, etc ) alone by myself without a tech job at all. I had 6-7 years experience doing this on my own, by myself before I got my first job in tech/marketing.

Sometimes, other people and their bad habits.. rub off on you or give you a false sense of how things should be done. I dislike that because it means you might have to unlearn something.
 

lowtek

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Do you think job experience in a tech agency/company is necessary to become a tech founder?
I imagine there are many intricacies that can only be learned in a real project with a real team. Learn on the job so to say.

Or is it possible to learn the tech-stack for example and go straight into freelance/building your own company by bootstrapping?

@csalvato @lowtek @srodrigo @eliquid

If you've already got it, it probably wouldn't hurt. If you're thinking you need a job in the industry to get started, I'd say it's a detour.

The exception to this, potentially, is that the connections you make would be helpful. You can make them other ways, but a job is a guaranteed way to meet people.
 

Mainstream7

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If your solution solves my problem, I don't care about your prior experience.

Thanks for the reminder MJ!

First, anything is possible. So yes, based on that alone it is possible with to be a tech founder without a job or related background.

Second, you only need to solve a problem. Not solve a problem with X background

Third, I built many things just learning the tech stack ( Perl, PHP, SQL, etc ) alone by myself without a tech job at all. I had 6-7 years experience doing this on my own, by myself before I got my first job in tech/marketing.

Sometimes, other people and their bad habits.. rub off on you or give you a false sense of how things should be done. I dislike that because it means you might have to unlearn something.

That's interesting. I guess there are certain advantages working alone that are different in a team.

If you've already got it, it probably wouldn't hurt. If you're thinking you need a job in the industry to get started, I'd say it's a detour.

The exception to this, potentially, is that the connections you make would be helpful. You can make them other ways, but a job is a guaranteed way to meet people.

Thank you for your perspective.
 

srodrigo

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Do you think job experience in a tech agency/company is necessary to become a tech founder?
I imagine there are many intricacies that can only be learned in a real project with a real team. Learn on the job so to say.

Or is it possible to learn the tech-stack for example and go straight into freelance/building your own company by bootstrapping?

@csalvato @lowtek @srodrigo @eliquid

Not necessary, but can be helpful, and you get some income while learning the in's and out's, specially at a startup. But I know people who became freelancers and/or built their own company after college or even without it. It's 2021, you can learn most techy things on your own and start solving problems and getting paid for it. And you can learn the actual business while you build it (there can be more rough edges though).
 

mentalic

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Firstly, I am a tech founder, so I would speak of experience.

Having prior tech experience definitely helped to an extent that I couldn't imagine what would happen if I didn't have any. There are so many aspects of software that you need to be aware of that it is next to impossible to figure out overnight.
- Security
- Performance/scalability
- Architecture
etc

In the past, I have also been involved in projects where the tech founder/co-founder didn't have prior experience. My experience was horrible, everything had to be re-written.

If there is no other option, I would suggest at least hiring a senior developer to be a mentor, provide advice etc.
 

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