Web Designers and Developers are often asked to work on sites in exchange for a partnership in the online business. In most cases, the person with the idea can’t get up enough funding for their project, or lacks the expertise or to manage the online venture along with everything else going on. It’s a common thing and sometimes worth inquiring about a business partnership, but there are usually a few commonalities among requests that emphatically get turned down.
For brevity, I’ve narrowed it down:
- “The vision of one”. If the vision isn’t shared, if its a bad idea to begin with, or if the developer doesn’t agree with the business model, you’ll definitely get a “no”. You might get a developer to build it, but you probably won’t get them to do much more.
- If you can’t secure funding, and money is already an issue, there’s an implied risk that the developer may never recover any financial benefit further down the road. Unless you find a developer who has lots of time on their hands, or who can see the promise at the end of the rainbow, chances are they’re not going to bite.
- Time is always a factor. If the project is a long one that requires quite a bit of work before it can get to a launch, don’t count on the partnership. Designers and developers are creative people. Creative people like freedom. One of the best things about the internet development business is that you get to experience “the rush” of creativity when a new project comes your way. A project that shows signs of lagging and dragging on, probably won’t get you a partnership deal.
- The foundation of the idea plays a big role in partnerships as well. If the idea-holder can’t articulate what the goals are, or seems dumbfounded when asked seemingly simple questions, it raises flags that maybe the idea wasn’t thought out all that well. If you luck up and get a developer who’s willing to take the reigns, you’ll do well to let them.. If not, expect to continue your partnership search.
- As much as I’d like to skip this one, cohesiveness has a lot to do with the partnership too. Let’s be real. We don’t necessarily like everyone we meet, let alone want to be locked into an ongoing partnership with them. For some IT professionals, this is a big deal – as serious as marriage. A business partnership is a legally-binding relationship, and some people just don’t want the headache of having to “agree” on everything. Respect those who have that perspective, and let them be.
So how to you entice a web developer or IT professional to take stock in your business idea?
Here are some pointers…
- Get your ideas straight. Don’t use “buzzwords” to make it sound good.
- Be able to explain the concept clearly and concisely.
- Be upfront about your financial situation, and able to explain the benefits of the investment.
- Don’t “name drop” to try to impress people. Instead, provide a brief profile of those involved.
- Don’t be defensive. It’s your idea, but sometimes other people can see what you can’t.
- Answer all the questions you can. If you don’t know the answer, research it. You’ll probably end up having to know anyway.
- Present lots of positives, and be candid about pitfalls. People don’t like to be blind-sided, and honesty goes a long way.
To attract the right people, you have to be fair in your expectations and you also have to be clear about the goals of the project. Great business partnerships have started with little to no money, and many an idea has had to change shape in order to materialize. If you’re serious about having an IT person partner with you in exchange for their talent, make sure that the offer is unbeatable and you’ll have an MVP who will work hard to take your idea to implementation.
(These tips work well for securing funding too…)
Chris Curtis is a veteran Internet Business Professional, Radio Personality, and pioneer of the global Web Business Ownership initiative. Known to “supercharge” her audiences with an infusion of internet business possibilities, Chris is one of the most progressive internet business activists of our time. Visit her web site at http://www.webbusinessownership.com to learn how to build, manage, and grow a profitable online business.