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Your go-to guide for startup team management

Munira Rangwala
15th Feb 2017
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The most valuable asset of any organisation is its employees. A startup can reach the height of success in no time if it has a strong team led by a determined leader. As aptly put by renowned business management expert Kenneth H Blanchard, “None of us is as smart as all of us.” It is easy to generate ideas, but if your team lacks co-ordination and a drive to accomplish, those ideas will remain but a theory. It is therefore important to hire the right kind of individuals and manage your team strategically. Here's how you can go about it:

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Hiring skilled individuals

In a startup, every employee counts. The first step is to hire patiently. A lot of startups regret their decision of bringing on board certain employees they hired in a rush. While shortlisting candidates, don't just rely on educational qualifications and past experience. Give or take a few responsibilities, a marketing head will have the same job profile across all companies. However, in a startup, the candidate's willingness to take on additional duties and work closely with other employees is what will make him a good hire.

Hire employees who've worked with startups before

If your startup unit can function and deliver on a shoestring budget, you've got a winning team. The reason it is always a better idea to hire individuals who have previous startup experience is that they can make a business grow organically by using budgeted marketing techniques like social media and SEO. If they only know how to work with big brands and big budgets, they will constantly find excuses to not get work done.

Provide training

If you want your team to handle a project in a certain way, show them how to do it. Aristotle once said, “Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.” Take time out to explain, illustrate, and train your employees, and put in the groundwork to demonstrate how a particular task needs to be done. However, training shouldn't be confused with micromanaging. When your team is aware about the standard of excellence you're looking for and how to achieve it, they will ensure that the task at hand is completed to your satisfaction.

Decipher personalities

Every individual you employ will have their own set of quirks and personality traits. Take some time out to understand what makes your employees tick. Every person will have good and bad days. If you understand how an individual will react to a certain situation, you can change your approach towards them to suit their needs. This will ensure greater co-operation and effectiveness at the workplace. You can also conduct personality tests at the time of hiring and take your team out for lunches and outings to make them more comfortable with one another.

Learn to delegate

As an entrepreneur in charge of making a budding company a success, it can be difficult to entrust important tasks to your employees. But as your company grows, you need to start delegating duties to other team members. One very important factor to remember while delegating is to hand over the ownership of a project completely. If you hold on to some of the work, it can create confusion as to who is responsible for what and thus lead to lack of accountability. When team members feel they have full ownership of a project, they work harder towards making it a success.

Even if your products and services are par excellence, your company will gradually begin to fail if your startup lacks strategic team management. If you haven't already started managing your team smartly, begin today!

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