Creating a Positive Culture Within a Startup
Growing From 5 -Unlimited
After you have finally closed that round of funding, and are ready to start working in an actual office— not your living room (which you and your co-founders have been working in for the last year) — you have to start thinking about adding people to your mighty team of three.
This by any account is a difficult challenge. Because when you start adding people to your team, you start creating a culture; and your culture begins to define your company.
The “way you run your startup now is setting the stage for what is acceptable and what’s not in your budding organization. [Because] that’s what culture is: a natural outgrowth of the way early business owners choose to do things,” according to the Young Entrepreneur Council. Your employees are what help create more product, more hours to be able to advance your company further. They need metrics of success applied to their roles in your company in order to feel satisfied.
Everything Can’t Be Flat
Every team needs a leader. It’s why professional sports teams have leaders on their teams. The same thing holds true for companies. In order to be the best team, each team needs a leader that is able to make decisions and execute them accordingly.
Now conversely, you should not give out titles like they are candy and call someone a director because they simply know Salesforce — that’s not appropriate either. What you should do is look at where you want your business to be in three, five or 10 years and then build your teams around it; if you are only focused on the short term, the next six months, then you really aren’t committed to the growth of your business.
Stay Focused on Your Company’s Core Values
When interviewed at SXSW Interactive session, “Turning Heads While Turning Profits,” Sophia Amoruso said that, “There’s a lot of great fashion out there, but we have to make sure that every bit of product that we put out on NastyGal is representative of the NastyGal brand.” In any industry the core values of your company are indicative of not only your brand but your company’s culture as well.
Not every great idea will be an idea you can execute at the moment — but it’s something you can work toward long as it is inline with the goal of your company. By doing this you will, “discover, articulate, and filter everything through your organization’s noble cause… that allows employees to say NO to a thousand ‘good things’, so they can say YES to two or three ‘great’ things,” according to the Young Entrepreneur Council, that align with your business’s long term goals to enable your business to continue to penetrate your industry via your “noble cause.” This is also the same idea as not overwhelming employees with a thousand different projects that are all “important.”
Space Will Generate More $$$ in Productivity Than You Think
Take a look at the health care industry. Doctors can only be on call for a certain period of time, and then are required to have a specific number of hours off before they come back to work. This includes the brilliant ones — the ones with research projects that will someday cure cancer. The point here is that your employees need time off to reboot as well.
When you don’t give actual PTO/ holidays to your employees, they don’t have time to reboot. If you start creating this notion that perpetuates — that PTO and holidays are only on paper and that everyone should never take an actual vacation (where they don’t have their email up and their Out of Office is on, but respond to every single email they get) — then you will begin to create an overworked company, and that produces a negative energy.
In turn, your turnover goes through the rough and you have reviews about your company that read, “morale is low, and turnover is high … This is a low budget company, starting with their investment in their employees.” In order to balance things out, allow people to take time off (when realistic). This will help them maximize their time — become more productive for you, help create a positive culture for your company; and enable you to push on with your “noble cause”.
At Dice we are working with companies to help them push on with their “noble cause” by helping them find the right people who not only believe in their cause, but have the skill set to do so. Call/ text/ email me to talk about how we can do this for your company and its “noble cause.”