Published on November 4, 2012
The people you work with can make all the difference, especially at the beginning.
/ by Aimee Marcos /
It can be so very easy to make a team; it is so much harder to make a team that works. This means that the team should be able to work well as a unit and be each other’s fallbacks to the outside world as well as work well within the ranks.
This is most especially true about business startup teams.
The team can be the most important part of the startup: it is the foundation of how work will flow, how processes are put in place and it is how the company grows. Much like the military, or an army, when one person does not work, then the rest of the company becomes lame. When one (so to speak) defects, the team morale goes down.
One of the more successful out-of-the-box business ideas in the Philippines is co.lab. It is a coworking facility where many startup entrepreneurs, freelance professionals, and mobile workers set up work side-by-side.
Co-founder and collaborator Francesca Zimmer-Santos believes that coworking has a role to play in the country’s road to progress. “We are planting the seeds of a new culture by supporting the entrepreneurial spirit and creating a venue for those who want to live off their passion. A place where people come to work doing what they love to do and go home feeling fulfilled.”
At co.lab, serendipitous team-ups happen. In other cases, it is the venue for many starting businesses to grow their baby teams. Co.lab itself is a young startup. Like their clients, it counts on its team to weather the ups and downs of a growing enterprise.
Zimmer-Santos shares a few guidelines on keeping a startup team in line and on the same page:
Referring to Simon Sinek‘s mantra, know why you are doing what you’re doing so that your team will believe in it too. They can’t get on board if you can’t explain why your business exists.
Aspire to contribute to history together.
Count on its ripple effect. Smile, and the world (well, your team) smiles with you.
It’s bad energy trying to distract you from what your goals and vision. Don’t complain.
Don’t ignore what is nagging inside you.
It will create a lot of unnecessary stress. Share the load. Ask for help, when needed.
Resist being judgmental, especially during conflicts.
If you feel uncertain, you just might be onto something good. Allow yourself to be uncomfortable—it ‘s the only way you are going to grow. That includes getting to know people you normally wouldn’t choose to be with.
Team chemistry can alter, even diminish, over time. It is important to know how (and be willing) to adapt to changes.
Let your team be fearless, even if they make mistakes. They may turn out to be significant lessons.
The early time in your company will be the grounds on which you base the foundation of the future of your company. There will be messes to clean and milestones to reach. Choosing the right people to help you start up your venture can severely affect your chances for either success or failure.
Aimee Marcos is a drummer for the band The Dorques, and is Group Manager for Snapworx Digital Inc. She started her own charitable foundation, Princess Bato, in 2005. Aimee also writes for the Inquirer Saturday Special, Dine Asia, and AVA.ph.
Illustrations by Ralph Manalansan