While many will tell you that the most important thing founders can do is code, it’s actually one of the worst uses of your time during the early days.
The best startups solve really big human problems by developing a theory and then to executing against it based on your intuition and available technology. If you believe this, then the most important thing you can do as a non-technical founder is constantly develop a deep understanding towards the needs and habits of human beings (your users).
Talk to everyone
The best way to develop this skill is to talk to people. Find out their underlying assumptions, how they think, and what they believe. Talk to your teenage cousins. What apps are they using now? How do they keep themselves entertained? Does he/she use snapchat? Do DJ Khaled’s snaps keep them engaged?
Talk to people who run their own companies. When you speak with them, pick up on bits and pieces that can improve your own assumptions. How are they getting their customers? What is keeping them from leaving? Which feature created some push-back? You learned they’re a transactional based marketplace. How do they keep users from going around the platform? What percentage do they take from each transaction? Why?
You can do this just about anyone — Investors, professors, parents, mentors, etc. Treat each conversation as a learning lesson about how the world works and you’ll start making better business decisions from improving your intuition.
Do this enough and you’ll be able to offer the best insight toward what direction your technical co founders/employees should take the product. Always have this proactive mindset.