In the startup world, your team is everything. The success of every startup depends heavily on how well your team works together, and choosing the wrong people for your team is the easiest way to kill your idea before it even gets going. After all, a good idea is useless without the right people in place that actually know how to implement it.
The road to success is never smooth and you need a cohesive team in place if you want to survive the inevitable bumps along the way.
We’ve already talked about building your startup team in terms of competencies and technical know-how, but there’s much more to hiring the right person than what’s written in a resume. So, how do you find the right people for your team?
They Have To Love The Idea As Much As They Love The Moola.
If you have someone on your team who doesn’t believe in your idea, they’re not going to give it their all. It just won’t happen. What if your launch goes belly-up, you lose investment, and you have to go back to the drawing board? Will they stick around or jump ship? You need to find people who are as passionate about your startup as they are about the paycheck coming in every month.
Someone who truly invests in the values and goals of your company will invest 100% of themselves into making it succeed. And those are the people who build your idea into something great.
Will They Gel With The Rest Of The Team?
You need to have a strong sense of your business culture before you even start hiring. Regardless of how great someone looks on paper, it’s not going to work out if they don’t mesh well with your team.
- What kind of personalities do you have on board already?
- Is your team vibe more outgoing or reserved?
- What’s the general working style that you promote?
- What are their communication skills like? (particularly important within remote teams)
- Do you need flexible workers or will you be assigning set working hours?
In terms of management; if you have a very low maintenance management style, you really shouldn’t be hiring someone who needs set working hours and constant supervision in order to complete their work. In this case, you need more flexible and entrepreneurial team members on board who can work autonomously as required, even if it’s 11pm at night. And if you’re more of a micro-manager — the same applies in reverse — you’re going to bash heads with someone who isn’t used to that regimented 9 to 5 mentality.
Then there’s the personality aspect; if your existing team is one that works hard, but is quite easy-going and tongue-in-cheek at times, then you need someone who fits into that kind of working environment. Otherwise, it’s a recipe for miscommunication. And if your team is more of the ‘head down, get the work done, and go home variety’, you need to hire someone with a similar mentality or you’ll end up with a seriously unhappy and unfulfilled team member.
You can make life a lot easier for yourself by choosing the right blend of personalities within your team.
And Finally: Trust Your Gut
Sometimes an applicant can look amazing on paper, but you still have that feeling that something is ‘off’. In this case, you should always trust your gut — because it’s probably right. Likewise, if someone doesn’t completely match up to the spec that you’re looking for, but you feel like they’d be a good fit, it’s usually worth taking a chance on that person.
Remember, you can always work on a person’s skillset but you can’t change their personality.
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