When assessing the attractiveness of a startup, an experienced investor looks at the viability of the team. The passion of the team, its competence and speed of movement are able to pull even hopeless projects. Conversely, the wrong team will ruin the business, even if the product is excellent.
To begin with, let’s look at the basic structure of the team for a startup:
1. Leader, CEO of the project. A person who ignites with their energy. The team sees a light In their eyes, and they are charged with inspiration. It is a “guarantor” that a startup will be implemented and will conquer the world.
2. CTO. Professional developers are good, but the project also needs a person who knows how to manage a team of these techies. They allocate their resources, give technical tasks and monitors the performance of the team. And quite often manually collects the first prototypes for the first steps towards working with clients and testing PMF.
3. The third part and the most important, in my opinion, is directly the team that brings the idea to life. Depending on the stage of development and the specifics of the project’s activities, the composition may differ significantly, but often everyone starts with outsourcing specific tasks, especially if a business is being created “from the scratch” and the project is just taking its first steps towards creating an MVP.
It looks pretty simple, but what is the ideal structure in terms of number and how to assemble such people? To do this, I propose the following 6 points for creating your “dream team”.
Don’t try to stimulate them with money. A startup is an investment in the future, make people believe in the project rather than provide them with all the benefits from the start. But how to achieve this? First of all, be sincere when talking about your project, experience and worldview. Secondly, talk about it a lot, because the more people learn about you and your project, the more likely it is to find like-minded people among them who are ready to work for the idea and reach the top together.
Keep a little less people than you need. In a small but motivated team, this will help maintain working dynamics and stimulate communication. At the initial stages of the project’s development, there will be few people in the team anyway, because it’s hard to keep a large team for a young project. But do not be tempted to expand the staff with the appearance of the first financial results – such a policy can play a cruel joke with business.
Don’t be afraid of staff turnover – it will harden your team and help on the way to creating a dream team. In a series of routine processes, repetition of operations that are not the most exciting, but necessary for the functioning of the company, a unified attitude and the right corporate culture are formed.
Do not assign others to hire employees at the early stages of the project development. Here the reason is simple – the difference of views. At the early stages of the project development, it is very important that the team is cohesive and united by a leader who sets the general vector of the company’s development. Another important factor is trust, and this risk is entirely the responsibility of the founder.
Recruit those who are stronger than you – this will upgrade both you personally and the whole team. Yes, it can be difficult to lure a professional into a young project that does not generate money and is far from the stage when it can turn the industry around. But even a part-time expert will greatly help your team, so look for such people, it will only benefit the project.
Look for people for specific tasks. Narrow specialists are the optimal employees for a startup, they are familiar with the nuances, motivated to learn and develop. But general specialists have a very unpleasant habit of getting into every aspect of their work with their thoughts, even if it is not necessary. Of course, at certain stages of the company’s development, it is useful to arrange a general brainstorm, but this should not harm current business processes.