Before you go out and buy provisions for your startup launch party, you have to have a winning team that is going to help your idea live up to its promise.
An idea can only be brought to fruition when you’ve put together the right group of people. Your team needs to be constructed around the premise that there are pillars to success for your company. Each pillar is going to be occupied by a specific team member and in theory all of them will work in harmony with each other. After all, if one pillar falls then it can collapse the whole project.
Using the Thomas Kilmann conflict styles, you can see how each member will be able to work together based on their personality type and other factors. When you have the right chemistry among the team members then your chances of having your startup achieve your dreams become more concrete.
In this article, I will go over several steps you should take to find the right people and then bring them together to form a tight knit and powerful team.
1 – Identify the positions
Before you even start to look for your team members, make sure that you and your founders have worked out how you plan to divide the responsibilities. Everybody has their strengths and interests so you should divide along those lines and only intersect at times when the work requires a consensus.
In other words, if you are the one that excels at bringing people in on your idea then you should be the public face of the company. Your partner may be the person that thrives doing the grunt work behind the scenes and should be in charge of the operations side of things.
Once you have this sorted out then you have to fill in the blanks. As I mentioned before, these are the pillars of the business so you need to find the right person for each one. What the pillars are will be determined by the type of business that your startup is.
For instance, if you are building a software company that develops apps then one of the pillars will be somebody that is in charge of the technology side of things. Another will be there for marketing and others for things like project management and financing.
2 – Find your personality
At some point, you will need to make sure that your different personalities are going to mesh with each other. But before that can happen you also have to figure out the personality of the startup itself.
How people will work will be determined by the type of setting that you are aiming for. Do you want people to be creative and bring some unorthodox ideas to the table? Then you’ll need to provide a creative and free form atmosphere and find people that work in an environment that is fairly unstructured.
If you have more of a conventional type of business that requires attention to detail then the atmosphere may be more formal. This will mean that your team has to be of a certain business background that understands how things are supposed to work in a specific framework.
3 – Approach things like a sport
Sports are very easy to identify with. The end goal is of course to win. Everybody knows the goal; the trick is to figure out the best approach to doing so. This is kind of the same thing for your startup.
Try to make sure that everybody understands the goal and that you put people in place according to how they will work to achieve it. Just like you wouldn’t expect a linebacker to do a quarterback’s job, you wouldn’t take somebody with a background in technology to handle the marketing.
Everybody should have clearly defined goals based on their strengths and skills and have a clearly defined job to go along with it.
4 – Think beyond startup
If everything goes according to plan, at some point you’re going to have an established company that is no longer a startup. Which means that you need to either hire people that will transition from bootstrapping to growing, or have a plan to hire another team that will take your company to the next level.
It may mean replacing your established team. This is actually quite frequent in startups as some people work well at launching but not so well at going beyond that towards sustainability.