Get your Dream Team

You want to get the best people around you in order to succeed? You don’t really know how to get there? Here are some good tips to start with:

Long-term relationship

“Alone I go faster, together we go further,” says the maxim. Yes, it is absolutely true. But we would add that if you get together with the wrong associates, you could put the success of the project at risk. Being associates is a long, long-term relationship. It is sometimes said that it is easier to get a divorce than to separate from a partner. The decision to be partners, choosing a partner, is probably one of the most important and difficult decisions you will make! When it comes to deciding how to value each other’s contributions, or to putting in place a dynamic approach to the distribution of shares between partners, the method is probably one of the best.

Put a ring on it

Piece of advice: do not look for an associate only for his/her good skills, when you don’t even know how you are going to pay him/her. Choosing someone
“because he/her knows how to sell/develop” is not a good enough reason. Don’t get confused between Resources and Partners. On the other hand, asking yourself if this junior developer could be your partner for the next 5 or 10 years? If she is a «key resource» for the company? Does he have the skills to become your future CTO? Or Head of Sales? If so, go for it! But if not, think twice before giving anyone 30% (for ex.) of your company…

Need guidance ?

Whether you are alone or with partners, it is always useful to get some ideas from external sources. Whether it is through a mentor or an advisory board, the external advice from a wise expert can help you see it all more clearly. Don’t ask him/her to support you on a daily basis, but 3 to 4 times a year, so you can take some time to summarize your progress, the challenges you face and the problems that block you. The time taken to get a hold of the bigger picture will already be of great help to you. And if your advisory board works well, you can save a lot of time. And you don’t have to pay them, they do it to help you, even if it always a good idea to pamper them!
So, start by respecting their time and carefully prepare your requests and your meeting timings!

Define your identity

The value of a job is not just the pay... When you start out, you don't have much money anyway. And when the time comes to hire the first employee, or all the following ones, you will probably be faced with a huge challenge, that of not being able to match the market salaries. But the value of a job isn't just the pay. Having a strong and inspiring vision can help you attract great people. You can choose to build a company culture that puts talent first, that capitalizes on people. Now you have an attractive and different value proposition!

One team – different roles

And last but not least, even if at the beginning everyone does a little bit of everything, it is helpful to create an organization chart that includes the important functions of the company (General Management, Operational Management, Product Management, Sales, Communication, Finance, HR, etc.) and that "maps" the different people involved. Even if one or more names are found in several places. Knowing "who does what" in a company is a good way to analyze your potential recruitment needs. And knowing "who decides what" will allow you to optimize everyone’s efforts and to detect possible malfunctions or areas for improvement.

Still hungry ?

Choose your co-founders

The art of finding a cofounder by Guy Kawasaki.

Lecture 5 minutes – EN
Ensemble de conseils sur les risques et opportunités du choix d’un cofondateur.

The founder’s dilemmas : Equity splits.

Vidéo 4 minutes – EN
Conseils et avertissements sur la façon de répartir les parts entre les cofondateurs à l’aide d’un exemple concret.

Building great founding teams by Steve Blank.

Lecture 5 minutes – EN
Définition claire et démystification des rôles dans une startup à ses débuts : fondateur, équipe initiale et CEO.

Is it better to start alone or with a team ?

Lecture 5 minutes – EN
11 témoignages d’entrepreneurs sur la question des cofondateurs et ses bénéfices et dangers.

Become a good CEO

Startup CEO : Role of a CEO.

Vidéo 6 minutes – EN
Définition du role exact du CEO et des missions qu’il doit accomplir.

Notes on leadership by Adreessen Horowitz.

Lecture 5 minutes – EN
Détail des trois qualités essentielles pour être un bon CEO, appuyé par des exemples concrets.

Surround yourself with the best people

Why every startup needs an advisory board.

Lecture 5 minutes – EN
Détail des bénéfices qu’apporte un advisory board à une startup et conseils sur la façon de le construire.

Choosing your board members.

Vidéo 6 minutes – EN
Ensemble de conseils et avertissements sur la création du conseil d’administration d’une startup.