What are the most important skills founders need before they start a business? originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
Answer by Alex Solomon, CTO and Co-Founder of PagerDuty, on Quora:
I’ve seen lots of patterns of successful founders with a variety of skill sets, so I don’t think there’s a single right answer to this question. In my case, all three PagerDuty founders started out as engineers, building the original PagerDuty product. Having a strong technical background — meaning being able to build and run the product — was key for us. In addition to that, even though none of us had any formal product management experience, we were all fairly product oriented. We all spoke to customers or potential customers to understand their problems and combined this with our own sense of where the product should be headed to form a cohesive product vision and direction.
In addition to this, we all had a few years of experience at an established company, Amazon. There, we learned a lot about how to build and run production systems, how to hire engineers, and about devops (Amazon was one of the pioneers of devops). Our time at Amazon led to us coming up with the original idea for PagerDuty.
To sum it up, for us, the most important skills we had before starting PagerDuty were:
- A solid founding team of friends that trusted each other.
- The engineering and product management skills needed to design, build and run a product.
- Work experience at an established company which led to us coming up with the idea for PagerDuty.
Everything else we learned on the job.
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This Article first appeared in forbes