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Problem-founder fit

/ˈprɒmɪs ˈmɑːkɪt fɪt/

“Live in the future, then build what’s missing...

It doesn’t work well simply to try to think of startup ideas. If you do that, you get bad ones that sound dangerously plausible. The best approach is more indirect: if you have the right sort of background, good startup ideas will seem obvious to you. But even then, not immediately. It takes time to come across situations where you notice something missing.”

Paul Graham

Problem-founder fit is a concept inspired by Paul Graham’s blog “How to get startup ideas?” that goes agains the conventional wisdom of relying on industry experience when assessing founder’s chances of success with a new venture.

Instead, Graham puts forward the idea that great founders need to intensively work on a problem to make themselves worthy of solving it.

That translates into an ability by the founders to generate unique insights and intuition all the while strengthening their grit and determination to guide the company to success no matter how difficult the challenges.

From the VC perspective, a founder-problem fit can be an important criteria when deciding on an investment.

Key concepts that founder needs to nail in order to convince investors are their obsession, origin story, personality and experience.