Building your team: What you need to pay attention to

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In the early stage of a startup, the work is on the neck of founders, but once the product start to get some traction, and you have validate your product/market fit. Building team that will support the exponential growth your startup is experiencing is the next phase.

Every person you hire can make or mar your startup, you will need to pay attention to many criteria when looking for team members.

Below are what you need to pay attention to, when looking for potential workers.

Cultural fit

Before we go into how culture can influence your decision in hiring a worker, let explain culture.

According to Dictionary, culture is defined as:

The arts, customs, and habits that characterize a particular society or
nation.

The beliefs, values, behaviour and material objects that constitute a people’s way of life.

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When hiring, you will want to pay attention to the person behavior, values, beliefs, and habits. Can the person work extra hour when the duties comes? Which is always the case for startup.

Does the person looks humble to you? Can he say “we are sorry” countless time to customer, when a problem come up.

What is his belief, will he be able to handshake customer no matter their religion or sex when the need arise.

What is their standard that they can’t compromise? Can you trust them with confidential information?

It will be hard to know all these during interview. Place them on a 5 days trial with promise to pay them if they are not what your startup require, or give them a work from home project to do.

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Workers that fill your weakness

Before interviewing anybody, analyse your business, look for that place that need worker urgently, you will always need additional hands, but the urgent need is always crucial.

Every startup has a weakness ability to strengthen it earlier will increase your chance to success.

Specialist

As a CEO you are the best generalist of your startup. If your startup is hiring for the first time hire many generalist and specialist.

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Generalist can do any work and be at anywhere at any time, while specialist will give your startup or business a direction.

Usually specialist should replace generalist as your startup grows, but do not loose your generalist, you can create a mini startup within your startup.

Don’t hire too much

Hiring too much

These arise when a startup receive a lot of fund. They will want to fill every crowning of their building with people thinking businesses expansion is the same thing as hiring a lot of people.

The problem of hiring too much is management, on boarding too much worker will outnumber those that can champion startup culture.
“Slow and steady win the race”

Reference

Do not accept a worker to your team without reference, it’s too much of a risk. Ask for people the that the worker has worked for in the past. Take your time to ask those people questions, any thing that can validate the worker.

In fact, it will be a good thing to hire worker that you, your cofounder or worker have worked with in the past. Promise to give them a bonus, if the person they refers is hire, thus will speed up the process.

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Allow them to breath

When you filled up your team with member it may not change a thing, you will still want to be in day to day running, or trying to micro manage.

It will drain you, is that not why you hire people in the first place. Have a trust in them, they Will perform well even in your absence.

Letting people go

Sometimes those candidate that seem they will fit well may not actually do, in such case you need to use the second card of a CEO which is firing.

What make Mark Zuckerberg a great CEO is not that he hired well but that he fired well, in fact every CEO must know how to fire as well as how to hire.

So, if it is not working, there is no chance it will work in the long run, So do the necessary.

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