Startups are nothing without their people. That’s easy to forget, especially in the tech world.
By Lazarus Vekiarides
With this in mind, how should an early-stage startup leader approach the task of recruiting? Many prospective hires are already comfortable in established jobs, with supportive networks, benefits and routines that cause them to think hard before leaving their lifestyles behind.
Startups, on the other hand, can offer something we call the “culture of achievement” -- a unique environment where the daily stressors of a fast-paced business are offset by meaningful accomplishments resulting from employees’ drive to conquer new challenges individually and as a team. This culture resonates heavily with some, is quickly discarded by others and is generally one of the most misunderstood qualities of startup employee management.
As an executive building or scaling a startup team, you might find it tedious when recruiting occupies a significant portion of your time. However, this task is almost sacred -- there’s nothing more crucial to the success of your company than the composition of your team and the organic roots of its culture. If assembled correctly, a team will thrive in the culture of achievement, celebrate group wins and set the bar higher for one another each day.
Below are some of the guidelines we’ve applied as we’ve built our teams over the years.
Team motivation: missionary vs. mercenary