What makes a perfect startup team?
I am the co-founder of a startup with my husband. I have taken on the role of customer service / sales rep. While my husband is responsible for managing our finances. It seems like we're still missing a lot of critical roles in running a business and we have a budget to bring on more team members. What positions are critical to have filled on your team?
Good luck with your business.
The answer depends on the nature of your business, it can be many positions for example it can be someone into IT who takes care of your website and email campaigns, or a marketer. It can be a lawyer if you do a lot of contracts.
You are talking about human capital planning, so my suggestion is to start by examining your long term business goals, then review your vision and mission statement and determine the job objectives required to achieve that, then you can create the relevant positions.
However if you sell anything to clients my humble suggestion is to start with a seller job to maximize your customers interface.
I suggest at a minimum you bring in a 3rd party outsider who can be a sounding board between your husband and you...And get to learn your own strengths and weaknesses, your husbands and new hire...And play off of those strengths by building TRUST
I think It dpends on you sales plan , are you going to cover Area or city or country , well accordin to your plan & No of sales team you can make out the position you require ,Sales manager or Sales in charge as well as No of sales you need - taking into consideration thier experience ( sales records ) I think you have to get those who has strong sales records ,in order to gain your targets .
The positions in the initial stages of a business depends on the type of business, the type of industry and the market environment you are in.
Depending on your type of business, your initial resources and needs, perhaps as a start-up, the roles of HR, Marketing and IT can be fulfilled by the co-founders, because the needs may not be a lot, especially if it is neither a centrally hi-tech business nor a labour intensive one.
What you do need, is diversity. And your first team members best be entrepreneurial. When first starting out, don't bother with a phone operator, receptionist or a personal assistant, because you don't want to invest time in managing them in the infancy stage. You probably should look for disciplined entrepreneurial personalities that will help you grow and expand your business, your market share or markets. Coupled with the entrepreneurial personality, you best get folks who are innovative thinkers (whether technical or non-technical), systems thinkers who always have the end in mind that are cautious of consequences across parallels and creative. And they need to bring different competencies to the table, that will complement your own and each others'.
Perhaps if you can share the specific nature of your business and current competency pool along with vision and business model, you could get a little more help with answering this question.
Hi Rema! I remember you from another post. Vermont Maple Syrup in FL correct? I think this is a great business idea - my parents moved to FL 10 years ago and all I heard about for years were the products they could no longer get because they moved. I know you are saying you have a budget for more team members, but what are your real needs? Analyze what you do during the day to see what you could hand off to someone else. Then analyze what you are not getting to do because you are busy being administrative or running an errand instead of handling appropriate tasks. It's not an easy exercise the first time you do it but it gets easier and more fluid as you go. Believe me I still slap myself sometimes saying "hand that off!". Good luck...and if we can help you in any way look us up! 900 miles is nothing with today's technology!
I owned a business with my husband in the customer service area. His strength was more detail and technical oriented, while mine was "big picture", sales, and strategy. We divvied the company up where he handled all the technical work while I ran the business. I needed a finance fairly quickly due to our growth and we hired a Controller, as a CFO would have been overkill. What we invested in was sales since it was important to leverage our contracts and grow as fast as possible. I can share that we made quite a few mistakes along the way and figured out that we needed strong job descriptions along with what you expected the position to do. This helped us make less mistakes (sales people that are good can sell themselves, even if they're not the right person).
One of my mentors told me that when hiring initial staff, look to where you are strongest and bring those types of people into the company. This way you are not learning what the position should be doing allowing you to mange the person well.
BTW, you should be thinking about the culture of your company as you bring new folks into the company.
Best of luck!
Hello Rema. I would take a look at the success of the salon, how did the opening go, was it on target for your set timeline? Are you reaching the levels forecast? If yes, then you may already have the most of the right team in place. Your Vermont Maple Syrup idea sounds delicious from a tourist as well as local consumer market. Being from New England and now Florida, I would love access to those products. I will assume your product supply chain is in place.
I also suggest a legal opinion on liability etc. Also I would go for a marketing / business development person that can acquire new clients, in the brick and mortar location and also online. If you do not have a web presence or using SEO you should look into that as the vast majority of people visiting the area visit online first to map their vacation strategy. There must also be local directories that cater to businesses in the area for the tourist factor. Look into what and how they drive local business as well. for your online SEO or other needs, feel free to reach out to me and I can introduce you to a few good folks that have proven success. Best wishes.
Its hard to accurately benchmark what makes up a perfect startup team w/o a specific line of business or industry, except to say these three keywords; Commercial Awareness, Entrepreneurial Marketing and Passion & Perceptive drive.
Commercial Awareness, places everyone in a confident and data driven position that assures everyone, as a team, they know What, Who, Where, When, How of the Startup / Product. Suffice to say that product background or adept knowledge of the brand is a necessary requirement.
Entrepreneurial Marketing, the say that the best person to market a product/brand are the product owners/managers. A product, is the brainchild of a product owner/manager and they are more attached, motivated and have a greater interest than anyone else in the organization/startup. Say for example, Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey etc. these leaders are just one of the millions of entrepreneurs in the Globe who did just that. In entrepreneurial marketing, if possible, one must be more driven on the ideas of what makes an enterprise (innovation, invention and commercialization), more value on what makes life better and interesting than unique service/value proposition. Lastly, is the holy grail of startups 'Growth hacking'.
Passion & Perceptive drive, someone use to say that passion is the only metrics that matters. Because such attributes possesses a strong determination to see things through. It is the foundation, the idea of what you are trying to achieve was founded. Its the reason why Steve Jobs did not sold Apple to Bill Gates, this is the reason how Walt Disney was able to raise an empire base on dreams or how Robin Peng fearlessly challenege the one of world's big tech company, Apple Inc.'s suit against his AppleCore and many more others. But in addition to Passion, it is a business prudence to hope for the best and plan for the worst and to understand the market; the demographic, demand, metrics or otherwise and the competition; their position, leadership, strategy or their market share or otherwise. Knowing and having all of these in a startup team's mindset makes everyone in the Startup fully passionate and positively perceptive towards the goal(s).
I hope I was able to help w/ your question and should you have any other stuffs you'd like to ask in the future just drop me a message and I'd be glad to share some thoughts or assist you in any way that I can. Good luck and God bless!
A few quick thoughts...First, a husband and wife ownership team can be the best of situations -- and it can be the worst. Be open and honest with each other, recognize the strengths and weaknesses of each, and interact in a business-like way to be synergistic.
Secondly, even before considering new hires, draw a simple functional org chart for your business (INCLUDING the top position). Put just one one of your names in each of those boxes. This makes sure that before hiring people, there is clarity around who is to look after it. It also will point out who should have the owner oversight of that function, even if you hired someone to do it.
Lastly, be open and honest with where you are each good. Delegate to an outsourced contractor the functions that are not key to driving growth and profit...Then address key areas of weakness between you two and determine whose name goes in that box going forward.
I hope this helped.
Hello Rema, it entirely depends on the nature of business you are into. Being a technologist myself, I am tempted to ask as to who is handling your tech services and operations? Every business today is deeply entrenched into tech support (social, website management etc). Again, assuming that your business does not need much tech support, who is taking care of operations, delivery, HR etc? If these roles are evenly distribured between the two of you, I guess you should be all set - at least to kickoff. Feel free to drop me a line if you wish to discuss in detail. Will assist in best way possible. I myself set up an Intrapreneurship establishment with just 2 staff members. So I guess if you've got the entire scope of your ops covered, you needn't worry.