Picking up on my all the weak founders “fit familiar patterns” theme, today I offer another one.
2. The nephew. This kid is smart and can do stuff. Good grades, got a good job, polished, talks. Not a programmer. The kid is too sociable, bold, and capable to be holed up as a programmer and too good (got the hedge fund job!) to fallback on “self-trained iPhone brogrammer” to make rent. Reads Paul Graham, uses Elance, goes to meetups. Promising! So confident that the nephew comes up with a brilliant and enchanting idea. Loves it. Talks to friends and colleagues about it and sells it, loves it more, and ignores the negative feedback. Executes and makes something. Puts 10k or 20k into it. Quits his job and pitches everyone. But this guy hasn’t been listening. 50 people tried this before. The market doesn’t care about this feature. No, moms don’t want it either. And you will never monetize that way. It is a case of PG-driven go-for-it that lacks the PG-wisdom-filter (YC admissions).
Wow that seems mean. But it might be you or a friend. Don’t let it be :)