Startup CTO for Growth

Sharing experience and knowledge is my real passion.
What I love the most is to share a point of view, not specifically in a top-down manner, but more about what works and what doesn’t, and about always being willing to learn from other people’s experiences.
Every piece of content you’ll find here has been created based on a real situation.

Becoming an IT manager for your startup

For a non-technical startup founder, the term “IT” can have a scary sound to it. It gets even scarier when I mention that the CTO role of the IT manager should be—for the most part—taken on by them. It doesn’t have to be scary. Once your tasks are clear and you’ve done your homework, there’s nothing you can’t master. That includes becoming a great IT manager for your startup.

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Shaping your product with expert tech advice

Startup founders have this notion that having a technical co-founder will fill all the “tech voids” in their project, and they’re not wrong. Their mistake is how they think we do it. CEOs often believe that, when it comes to tech, a CTO has all the answers -Spoiler alert- we don’t. The trick is we have some answers and we know how to get the rest. In early-stage startups, you can also emulate this without a CTO, let’s see how.

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Being a good product manager in your startup

In my years as a tech consultant and startup CTO, I’ve encountered all sorts of founders, ideas, business models and challenges. Some have succeeded, some have failed, and I’ve been there to learn from all of them. Building a startup without a CTO is a reality to most who can’t afford one, but it doesn’t have to be such a rocky road.

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The true value of motivation for a startup founder

It’s not always easy being the eager beaver, especially after all the punches startup life throws at you, it’s only human to get overwhelmed and want to give up trying. But in those hard times, that’s where the good stuff happens, where people show their true colors, what they’re made of and move forward. Today I want to talk about motivation and how to hold on it throughout your startup journey.

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Why is it so hard to talk with developers?

I get this question on a regular basis, and it’s true. It’s rare to find developers that are on the same page on everything with their founder. Communication in a relationship is hardly easy, but this interdisciplinary work relation proves to be particularly challenging. Today we’re asking “why?”. Why does it feel like you’re speaking different languages?

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The startup founder and personal branding (Part 2)

Last week we took a look at the situation of a startup founder I mentored that had credited all of his first cash’s success to his personal image rather than to the merit of his product. This week we’re picking up where we left off and tackling how you should start building your personal brand, and to what extent should it lead your startup’s image.

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The startup founder and personal branding (Part 1)

I recently mentored a certain startup, a very smart SaaS platform for the consulting industry. They were able to generate their first $10,000 fairly quickly, which led me to ask the founder: “Did your clients sign up for the service because of the product or because of you?” His answer: “Because of me.” Is this a good or a bad thing?

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November 2018: Personal retrospective

I was such in a productive/overwhelm mode that I almost forgot to share what I’ve been up to in November. A few years ago, I wrote down my vision—my WHY: “I want to help the world innovate along its different cultures.” This is exactly what I did during the past month, teaching innovation management at the MBA program of IAE Montpellier (at Montpellier University).

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How innovation boosts startups’ success more than regular companies’

We’ve all heard how risky building a startup can be. So it might be a little confusing to hear that startups have a better chance of success when innovating than regular companies. However, it proves itself to be true, and today I want to break down how startups have the upper hand when it comes to achieving success through innovation.

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Can a trainee handle my startup’s development?

I’ve heard it more than once: I don’t have much money for development. Could I get an intern to develop my solution for me? I’ll be honest. Those are indeed treacherous waters of which non-technical founders have to be especially careful. If you haven’t managed developers before, and your candidates haven’t taken part of any projects by themselves, there are just too many things that could go sideways in that relationship. However, it isn’t entirely hopeless. Today I’ll share with you how you can make the most out of internships, minimize risks, and get a good product out of it.

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How to manage your first developer

I’ve seen it happen over and over again: first-time startup founders, without technical co-founders by their side, want to hire a developer on their own. But regardless if they go for freelance, a trainee or a senior developer, the founder ends up being in way over his or her head. They have no idea how to manage a developer, how to communicate their ideas to them, how to keep track of their work, etc.

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Project planning: Startup style

There are thousands of ways to plan a project. This article covers the basic process I suggest for planning a startup project. The techniques here will help you plan for your startup journey, keeping you on-track and focused to achieve your dream company.

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5 Focus areas for startup innovation

A startup founder’s time is the most valuable thing he or she has, and unfortunately, it is also the most wasted resource in early-stage startups. When you’re striving to provide an innovative product or service, you need to make sure your time in doing so is well spent. So today I bring you five areas on which to focus your efforts when innovating, and the tools to set you on the right path.

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How to systematically integrate innovation into your process

I’ve talked a lot about innovation in the last two posts. Two weeks ago we tackled what innovation really means for your startup, and last week, how you can promote innovation within your company. Today we keep the ball rolling by learning how you can establish a system that consistently sparks ideas and manages these ideas properly for refinement, and later, implementation.

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How to promote innovation within your company

Last week we got into what innovation means for a startup, this week we’re taking a more hands-on approach. We’ll discuss how you can groom your employees to be more innovative by creating a safe space for failure and risk-taking, and how some of the more “traditional ways” of building a company might be getting in the way of the future.

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