How to identify your startup's weaknesses easily
One of the best ways to do a complete review of your startup project and identify its potential weaknesses is to fill a Y Combinator application.
For those who haven’t heard of YC, it’s often considered as the world’s best startup accelerator, having launched more than 3000 companies such as Airbnb, Stripe, Doordash, Coinbase, or Dropbox.
As YC’s notorious co-founder Paul Graham puts it:
Answering all the questions on the application will force you to think through the following aspects of your project:
Your current product
Your metrics (users, revenue, retention, etc..)
Your equity split among founders
Potential legal challenges
Fundraising and your current available runway
.. And much more
As you’ll be filling the application, you'll probably come across questions that will make you feel uncomfortable or which you feel you don’t have the answer to.
That’s ok. The whole goal of this exercise is specifically to identify the weaknesses on which you should be working on. Keep working on those and iterate on your application until it becomes coherent!
I’ve created an editable Google Doc of the application's questions so you can work on it with your cofounders and not have to start a real application, here it is: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1wJiRIQl_dlPbY0E0_i6yKZtLK4gFTfRWBg0EIPZo9M8/edit?usp=sharing