If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you should know one piece of wisdom. Startups are fragile, but with the correct attitude, competency to succeed, and a sprinkling of luck, you can make a success of your idea. However, running a great startup is not only an effort in making sure you do everything right, but it’s also an effort in trying not to do anything wrong.
A marketing mistake or PR blunder that happens can be recovered from with quick thinking and smart implementation, but one area that is much more difficult to recover from if handled poorly is the drive of your employees. As a startup, it’s likely you’re working with a thin skeleton team, likely with those employees taking on multiple departmental roles simply because there isn’t enough capital justification to take on more employees.
With this already heavy load that you as owner are no doubt experiencing too, it’s worth making sure the following issues are resolved or prevented, and we’ll help you figure out how.
While it’s not exactly common for startups to offer full on reliable contractual terms of employment to their staff, it is worthwhile noting something in writing and reliably giving your employees a regular paycheck. It’s only fair. Remember, they are taking a chance on your idea and in the process eschewing their job security, so the least you can do is compensate them often for their time. In the early days, if you can’t afford a regular competitive paycheck, you need to make this absolutely clear before you take them on.
This should be in writing. You can draw up basic terms and have them ratified by legal counsel if you’re worried about the effort coming back on you. However, even if a staff member is willing to contribute for little to no payment, you should keep them in mind for when your business does well, and reward that trust placed in you in kind. If not, you can find yourself hurting for employee numbers, while finding it difficult to hire more.
Now, in your effort to forgo the cost of a rental space for your office proceedings, it might be tempting to view your makeshift home office as a place to ‘relax and work.’ This runs counter to optimal efficiency. Yes, it’s true that even huge conglomerates such as Google place staff creativity on a pedestal, and so provide the rooms with snack bars, bean bag chairs, and even poles to slide down from floor to floor.
However, despite the relaxed attitude that they espouse, if you’re lucky enough to visit their office, you’ll realize that it is never unclean. This is why using commercial cleaning services is a must no matter how humble your operation, because as you grow, you’ll find it harder and harder to stay on top of your work duties, tidying and office cleaning. It takes up hours of the day you don’t need, and a messy office can kill the drive of anyone inside, especially your employees.
These two issues are some of the biggest killers of workplace drive up and down the country. But you’re smarter than letting them affect your business, and the previous tips will help you do just the opposite.