For many people, getting their startup going is a dream come true. It’s the first step in realizing an important vision, and everything feels so saturated with potential. There are, however, a few downsides to running your own startup. One of them is that it’s hard to find and keep great employees. Startups aren’t overflowing with cash – they can only pay their employees so much, and the expectations are often high. Until the money starts pouring in, you may want to accommodate your employees in different ways.
- Offer Flexibility
Work-life balance is one of the greatest gifts of all. Your employees are devoting a lot of their time to you, but they also need to devote some time to their other commitments. They may have more than one job. Maybe they have families they’d like to see more often, or hobbies that they’re passionate about. Offer some flexible scheduling. If everyone is doing 40 hours a week, it doesn’t necessarily matter when they take those 40 hours. They’re working hard, and they deserve to play hard, too.
- Empower Them
Empowering your employees has many benefits. One of which is that it will undoubtedly reduce your workload. If you allow them to play to their competency, they won’t need you to approve every little thing. They’ll be able to take initiative. The next best benefit is the way that your empowered employees will feel. These employees will know that you trust their judgement and value their input – both of which are hard to come by in a corporate environment. You may not be able to offer them a hefty salary, but you can certainly offer them a sense of worth.
- Be a Leader, Not a Boss
It’s natural to take your startup very seriously. It was your brainchild, and you worked hard to get those plans going. While it’s okay to feel attached to what you’ve started, you’re going to have to surrender a little bit of control. You would never be able to accomplish the things you want to accomplish without the people who work tirelessly for modest pay. It’s become just as much their passion as it is yours. Treat everyone as equal. Replace “I” with “we” a little more often. Allow them to truly appreciate that they are an imperative part of your plans.
- Create the Right Environment
Some of the best startups have called a kitchen table home base, but the odds were stacked against them. You’re going to need an office that will give everyone their own space and accommodate a little bit of growth. When you’re searching Gumtree for the perfect workspace, there are a few things you want to keep in mind: your budget, and the way you want to work. If you have the ability to rent a dedicated office space, that’s great. If funds are tight, you can always split the rent with another startup.
- Celebrate Often
Everyone is busting their tails, and every victory is a victory. Celebrate as often as you can. This will prevent dreadful employee burnout while showing everyone that their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed. Once in a while, you have to spend an afternoon looking back at everything you’ve overcome as a team. Take everyone out for a beer. Have a potluck. Go camping together. You need to make sure you have enough good times to balance out the tough ones.
You aren’t as ill equipped as you may have previously believed – you’re just equipped differently. Use the unique strengths and abilities you have as a startup owner to provide your employees things that competitors can’t.