What is more significant to a Startup; Founders or Employees?

What is more significant to a Startup; Founders or Employees?

Are you planning to initiate some sort of startup? If yes; you must be haunted by a lot of delusions related to the failure of your new venture; the biggest and freakiest of those being the working staff and office environment.

Usually we Indians, as entrepreneurs, spend more than 50% of our business planning schedule only on discussing various strategies of “how to spot the perfect employee for our startup?”

Of course, the founders are top managers and decision makers of the organization; yet a suitable workforce if more vital to the business. And, that’s why it’s very important for founders to wisely appoint the employees.

Hiring for a startup

Finding appropriate staff for your startup and recruiting them for various roles can be a herculean task sometimes; especially if you try to compare this with the recruitment process at certain large and established companies.

While at giant corporate houses, the recruitment is mostly process driven and the requirement of workforce is mostly for specific tasks or roles where all they have to do, is follow routine procedures and instructions; hiring for startups could be more of a disaster management job.

Again, at startups, an employee gets to utilize his/her creativity and spontaneity for different challenging tasks which can further define a completely new process of business functions.

Same Common Mistake

One of the biggest goof-ups that entrepreneurs do, is selecting employees who are only interested in a full time office job rather than a profile where they can utilize their skills to the fullest.

According to a research conducted in 2015, this turned out to be the reason of shutdowns for more than 35% of new businesses in Asia.

Instead, if our focus is on spotting people who are more concerned for a larger than life experience. Employees who give priority to experience rather than smaller hikes, can really be an asset for your startups.

An Outlandish Nightmare

We commonly see that people get fired from startups for challenging the current situations. Employees that are of innovative and entrepreneurial nature, do not find stability with new businesses.

The primary reason behind this is the fear of founders that such employees can become a competitor to their business or may develop others who can be their business rivals in future.

In today’s times, when every company is trying to shorten the product cycle and we all have seen the growth of some biggest companies right from a startup; this fear should not be that substantial.

Alternatively, innovative employees can be much more beneficial for business as compared to employees that are only loyal and religiously follow instructions given by management.

The Big Question

Few days back when I was reading some interesting blogs over Affiliate Marketing and Indian Startups; I came across a reference quote from some research fellow at IIM Bangalore.

This guy, named Pavan Soni, asked at a business conference, “Why are you looking for an employee who is loyal? Instead, go and hire someone who can lead innovation and has potential to create an unfair advantage over your competition.”

He even suggested a quick way to judge a candidate whether he/she is innovative or not by simply checking if he/she has a lot of interests besides their usual job.

Attracting Talent

If a founder thinks that employees who spend more time in office are more significant to business, then they will surely find it difficult to attract talented candidate who can drive innovation.

Obviously, there are times when your team might need more of your time and you have to stay back late in office however; this never means you have to be one dimensional and give your entire life to work.

On the contrary, if the founders start giving more privileges to employees who stay late at office rather than those who leave on time and pursue other interests, then they might end up losing some brilliant ideas.

Work Culture

Once you are through with the recruitment; another massive task is to implement an appealing work culture for your employees which not only inspires them to work, but also help you bring the best out of them.

Founders need to develop a culture where employees are encouraged to think out of the box and come up with better ideas to perform vital business functions in a mush smarter way; and not monotonously following the instructions.

Ask yourself whether you want to be ordinary and play safe without any new ideas or take innovative steps to rise as someone special and extraordinary.

Risk Appetite

If you really want to take your startup to heights, you must be ready to take risks. In today’s world where success is driven by innovation; any startup will begin with an unbalanced growth and mostly, not the incremental one.

Entrepreneurs are advised to encourage their employees to take risks and implement a policy where the employees are not penalized for genuine mistakes rather rewarded for risking everything to be the best they can be.

This might result in either something pioneering that will bring massive success or some catastrophe to your business; however it’s a risk that every startup must take in order to receive instant results.

Building Company instead of Products

It is a usual tendency of Indian Entrepreneurs to spend maximum talent and efforts in building products or services so that they can balance the cost incurred while establishing the startup.

But we always forget that the word “Company” literally means a group of people working together to achieve a common goal and that’s why it is more significant to build the company culture first.

When we focus on building a company rather than products; we eventually realize that our employees are actually the biggest source for process expertise, great skills, honest inspiration and candid ideas.

Patience is the key to Success

For a founder at any startup, employees who play it safe at work and need step-by-step guidance for almost each single task, can exhaust up all your time and energy however; if you believe in them, they turn up to be the most loyal ones.

At times,  it could be more sensible to select candidates who are self-managed, can come up with brilliant business strategies and can identify the areas of improvements; yet you need to be very patient with them as well.

Considering both factors, the enthusiasm of fresh blood and the skills of seasoned employees, a startup must begin with a balanced team to achieve timely targets in best possible ways.

The Bottom Line

The key responsibility of an entrepreneur should be nurturing the talent and developing the skills of its employees. Further, one must create a motivating environment for staff in order to achieve their complete potential.

Unfortunately, we often see the founders of startups focusing on mundane things and leaving the workforce and culture to secondary which generally ends up in an early closure of the business.

Recruiting a skilled staff and developing proper office environment are the needs of time, every startup must focus on. And if you succeed in achieving these two primary objectives; nothing on earth can stop your victory voyage.



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