Five types of programmers, but which shouldn’t startups hire

Max Ischenko, the founder of DOU and Djinni, described on his Twitter five types of programmers who can get a job at a startup and what to expect from each of them. He also advised which of these specialists would be the best match for a bootstrap company.

  1. Junior with no experience. They are ready to do any task but can’t do it due to a lack of skills. It is the “brute force method”: when you have no money for seniors — you hire many juniors.
  2. Junior with experience. The code is a mess of copy-pastes and hacks that you can’t keep up because there was no one more experienced around to tell you how to do it better. You’re left with a write-only MVP, but at least it works, and the next team can rewrite it.
  3. Senior with no experience at a startup. They build solutions with the “right“ architecture and processes that will never make it to production because the money will run out faster.
  4. He’s done it before and failed. This type of programmers has experience in building a product from scratch. But for some reason the product has not been successful in the market. If it had, they would not be interested in working on your startup.
  5. Big picture kind of guy. These programmers have knowledge that they have never put into practice. They say the right things, think about alignment, create beautiful presentations, and look for money and work/life balance. That’s worse than a junior with no experience. At least with a junior you don’t waste money.

“The 2nd and 4th options will work. Very rarely, but number three can work as well. All else — just say no,” Max concludes.