The most important factor for a startup’s success is the co-founder relationship. Firstly, having a partner for the journey, to survive the near-death experiences with, is a source of comfort. Secondly, each founder has a unique but complementary skill set and brings different competencies to the team.
Of his own 10-year relationship with his co-founder, Michael points out that it is built on a basis of complete trust. Michael first met his co-founder when he hired him on Upwork as a math consultant for a model, and they soon proceeded to build a precursor to Psyquation.
When working together, some friction is inevitable, which Michael says, one must learn to rise above, and focus instead on the positives of the working relationship. At times when they have felt unable to agree on something, they have sought outside guidance to gain a broader perspective, rather than engage in conflict. This keeps the wheels of their partnership turning and allows for everyone’s best interests.
Similarly, Michael speaks passionately about nurturing all stakeholder relationships, across employees, family, and shareholders, stating that the real measure of success is in the longevity of these relationships.