I don’t do Partnership

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I’m writing this blog because just yesterday is the latest of phone calls among a string of calls I get from “clients” who broached the topic of partnership in one straight-forward way or in another beat-around-the-bush way. Whatever the case, I’m writing this down as a blog entry so that nobody’s time, not mine, not theirs, are wasted.


I do only PAID work for programming and development, for whatever IT stuff for which I have the skillset for. Like website development, troubleshooting of your existing website, web app development, mobile app development, development of various types of cloud-based management systems.

I do understand that the corporate textbooks nowadays extoll the values of partnership and give ample examples of how Entrepreneur A teamed up with Techie B and together they built the Great Product and wow, what a success story. I do not belittle such stories, but if you have such a partnership intention, do be upfront and say THAT first, even if you’re talking with yet another programmer.

Do not start by talking about your idea first, and attempt the “technique” of enticement. Gone are the times when ideas made the success stories. Nowadays, everyone’s got great ideas. In fact, I myself have tons of great ideas. It might be a repeated point elsewhere, but I’ll repeat again: Ideas don’t make the success story. Hard work, smart work and great execution are the one which make them.

Maybe the business textbook talks about building relationship with the programmer, or something. I remember one time when I had a many-hours talk with one guy in a café, at his humble request. But from what I know, programmers are basically a straight-to-the-point type of people. If you say what you want upfront, they will respect it more than a roundabout style. But then again, isn’t that what anyone else would want too?

My latest experience was yesterday when the caller talks ALL about the project, the details, the requirements, etc. Even queries me about my bugs-handling and warranty period and after-sales support and so on. I had to stop my dinner halfway to address all that, over the phone.

And then he dropped the bomb!

He started talking about transactional compensation! That means I get paid ONLY AFTER the project is done and it is making business for him, and I get money based on the transactions. Seriously! If so, why would I be doing this project for him and not for myself?

I’m not undermining the value of partnership between multiple-talents, but of late, I have been getting calls mainly from people whose interpretation of partnership is in summary:

“Hey, I’ve got the GREAT IDEA. You’ve got the development skills. Let us partner together and make some crazy money!”

Which, in my opinion, actually translates to:

“Hey, I got only the idea which I think is super great. You ‘just’ have to develop the solution/product/app. Then, we try to market it and hope and pray that we become the next success story. In other words, I want free development work for my idea. Deal? ”

Obviously, no deal. Why would I spend my days and time to develop YOUR idea without payment? Idea costs nothing and I have many of my own. Development takes time and effort, and I’m not talking hours but days and months.

Though this article might sound rude and uptight, my main intention is to not waste both our times. Upfront and straightforward works when you’re dealing with programmers. And as for me, I do not do partnership no matter how great your idea is. I will be remaining the paid worker who can implement your idea technically.


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