What title to give to a non-founder first person in company


This question is a follow up to another question but it stands as a question by itself so i decided to ask it separately..

i am a single-founder starting a company and hence looking for investments/incubator/YC.
clearly i can't go through it alone, i need some one. So i asked the above linked question as to should i add a novice founder (that is all i can find right now being where i am) because investors tend to avoid single founder companies and i might need a hand at small day to day stuff. The response was that i shouldn't and i agree with it. Make no mistake, he is just novice in tech startup industry but is a brilliant person, i just believe in a fast paced tech startup industry, it just won't be worth it to teach him enough so that he can be a founder. Currently, as it stands, he does not bring anything to the table.

But i need someone, that's a given, so i decided to hire him a a sort of employee but since the company is very early stage, 'employee' really does not make any sense because he won't be doing a particular task. So the question is what should i title this said guy who is not a founder/co-founder and won't be playing a key role in business development but still plays VERY important role in company, the first non-founder.

I know title is something that i should not worry about but there has to be something that i introduce him to every body with, that i tell my investors, that i tell him.

Also should i give him equity? if yest then how much? (I think i should give him equity but i would really like to know what you think, how much equity is something i don't know yet, i need help on it too)

Please help, it will be much appreciated


Equity Employees Founders Titles

asked Oct 18 '11 at 23:09
125 points
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2 Answers



Lead Developer?

Technology Director?

Senior Coder? (or, Senor Coder?) ;)

Architecture Lead

answered Oct 18 '11 at 23:28
Brian Karas
3,407 points
  • hmm he is novice.. does not know coding, or much about startup tech or tech product development or software architecture.. basically his computer knowledge is that of an above-average user and NOT a tech lead. (i know what you are thinking, this is bad, i know, but) He studied about business in general and will be doing things like socializing with people, making contacts and everything a geek as myself would not do. (Except for business decisions, which will rest with me since he does not know much about how startups work.) – Achshar 10 years ago
  • OK, in that case, something like "PR Manager", "Marketing", "Marcom Manager", etc. would work. – Brian Karas 10 years ago
  • ah "Marketing" looks good :) Thanks! – Achshar 10 years ago
  • oh and what about equity? – Achshar 10 years ago
  • Equity for that position would be very low. Usually about .05% after dilutions, so maybe around 1% at this stage. – Brian Karas 10 years ago
  • hmm i believe he is a great person and deserves more, simply because me and my company need him, so i was thinking something on the lines of 5%. But still thanks for responding :) I think i know what i want :D Thanks! – Achshar 10 years ago


How about employee #1

A bit tongue in cheek, but hey it can be useful in conversations. I've learnt that humour goes a long way when trying to connect with people.

answered Oct 19 '11 at 00:19
Smart Company Software
1,190 points
  • haha good one but @Brian suggested "marketing", it is not exact but seems to roughly fit, at the end of the day something more suitable would be Marketing. what do you think? – Achshar 10 years ago
  • also what do you think about equity? how much should i give him? – Achshar 10 years ago

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