‘The Team’ Required for A Startup’s Success

Mobilising a troop of workforce can be a taxing task for a startup. It’s not only about hunting down a bunch of potential employees but also people who are willing to walk an extra mile to contribute to the growth of a startup. An employee’s expertise, experience and attitude can prove to be the deal-breaker for a startup. While filtering and hiring trained manpower is challenging enough, another hard task is of convincing these talented bunch to join a young team. For experienced professionals, joining a brigade of an inexperienced company is a risky career move. Therefore, while hiring your best staff, you have to be very careful and impressive enough.

Here are a few suggestions for consideration, under two main headings

  • Quality
  • Quantity / Assortment


  1. To hire the finest brains for your startup, you need to first develop your business’s vision. More exciting and plausible your business vision is, easier to get top talents onboard. With constraints to spend on big salary packages, you need to convey your long-term visions clearly to these professionals. With long-term gains in the future and promising growth would definitely create an impact. Therefore, your visions and goals should be stimulating and challenging as well.
  2. Hunt down resources related to your business terrain. Many startups commit the error of hiring specialists with backgrounds of another business background. A professional having a firm hold on the subject-matter / area, along with apt experience will work wonders for a young company. For example, a newly launched five-star hotel will require an experienced General Manager and Resident Manager from a similar hotel management background. It would be a disaster to bring somebody from the retail segment and run the hotel. It will be a time-consuming task for him/her to get hold of the subject matter. Leave alone developing a functional strategy.
  3. While crafting ‘The Team’, keep in mind to sieve and hire efficient middle and senior level management. This middle and senior level management play an important role in streamlining the process of your startup. Hiring them might prove to be an uphill task, as most of them are hunted down by large multinational corporations offering big bucks. By showcasing a broader spectrum of career growth, challenging projects and more exposure will help in getting these flocks of fitting professionals onboard.
  4. Lure the right type of professionals into the workforce. Avoid fervent hiring of people who are willing to do it for free or if you have known them for a longer period. Avoid hiring a big team in expectation of future growth. Just hire skilled experts for specific roles only.
  5. Retain your faithful fans. In other words, hold on to people who have worked since the birth of the idea and had devoted to developing the idea/ product and the startup as well. They know all the ins and outs of your startup and completely understand your business’s vision.
  6. Lastly, identify the source from which you will generate and pay your employees their pay cheques. Keep in mind to identify a constant source of income, which runs the cycle smoothly. A clear plan should be chalked out. Uncertain payment schedule might prove to be a raw deal for the team and force them to leave the workforce frustrated.

Quantity / Assortment

  1. With less cash to pump into the business infrastructure, startups are left in a pickle as to who to hire? And how many to hire? Well, a stitch in time saves nine. Hiring too many professionals at once is a recipe for disaster. Expecting that there would be windfall gains and their salaries will be managed through it, is a big bubble that will burst in no time. As a startup, hire a small, efficient and experienced team of professionals. Hire professionals who not only bring their experience, expertise and aptitude, but also a relentless attitude of ‘never say die’.
  2. Get people onboard, who wear a lot of different hats and are up for challenges. A multi-talented workforce is icing on the cake and will reduce the operational cost of a startup.
  3. Having said that, at least a specific set of skilled professionals is quite essential. For example, for an IT startup, a CEO, marketing manager, finance expert/ accountant, front-end engineer, back end engineer, HR, research & analytics, legal expert, admin, etc. are a necessity.
  4. Do not go overboard in hiring too many, too early. With limited cash to infuse in the business, hiring too many specialists and professionals might escalate the operating cost. Focus on the right mix of professionals, who can yield the desired result.
  5. One of the most effective ways to get the best of your talented bunch is to create the appropriate role. By clearly defining the role and expectations of the position, startups can reap a lot of benefit. For example, while hiring an SCM manager, define the role, responsibility and expectations of the company clearly. Get people with appropriate experience in the background.
  6. Bring in people from the right background. For example, for an HR generalist role, hiring a professional having experience in the same field will make the functioning of the startup smooth.
  7. Finally, sometimes getting freshers on board is also beneficial for a startup. First, startups will have to shell out less cash as paycheques. Second, fresh out of college professionals will have the greed to grasp and grow in the stimulating environment. Third, they will pump in an extra amount of enthusiasm and energy, always ready to take the challenges head-on. Sure they will lack experience but sometimes it’s worth trying.

In conclusion, to form a powerful, efficient and adventurous team of specialists, is a back-breaking task for any startup. With careful consideration and homework in place, an efficient team can be crafted to escalate the growth of a startup. Skill management has always been a crucial aspect for startups. Once this aspect has been taken care of, developing strategic infrastructure becomes easier.

Sumaiya Khan


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