Udacity; Vox Media; Uptake; DraftKings—what do these names have in common?
They’re all startups that didn’t exist 5 years ago—and are now worth billions.
Entrepreneurs today are aware of the work it takes to get a business up and running. That said, they also know that if the right footing is found, startups can turn into gold mines. Evidence of this is seen in the number of startups that achieve what is called Unicorn Status.
Simply put, unicorn status is given to startups that are valued at upwards of USD 1 billion. 35 tech startups in the US alone achieved this status just the previous year according to one source. It makes sense that building a startup would strike many as a lucrative prospect.
Rules to Implement in Your New Startup Office
If you’ve established yourself to the point that you can afford office space, chances are, you’re also looking to hire. Hiring means it won’t just be you and your close group of partners anymore. It also means that you will need to establish your standard mode of operating. Simply put, basic rules that can be implemented in your new startup office which relate to how you work.
There are times in a business setting, though rare, where you can just wing it and turn a situation around to your advantage. Even if you managed to pull something of the sort off in the past, that approach isn’t always the best.
A rule you should stress on—whether for yourself or for those you hire—is that preparation should be prioritized. It doesn’t matter if you’re meeting with a client or customer, connecting with a partner organization or having an internal meeting.
Regardless of the capacity, if time is scheduled for various individuals working on a shared task to connect, a little basic preparation is mandatory. Being prepared ensures that meetings are more fruitful, and that other’s time isn’t wasted.
A way to facilitate this is by scheduling and giving your employees a heads up before any meetings whether internal or otherwise. That way, they know what’s going to be discussed and will have a chance to ready themselves.
Adhere to Schedules
Now we’re not saying that you need to adhere to the usual nine to five work hours when your startup business kicks off. Many fields do not require adherence to such rigid timings. Where nine to five is not important, having some kind of schedule in place is necessary.
Structure helps streamline a lot of official processes and scheduling provides just that. Even if you don’t have an office that is packed by 9:30 am, schedules should not be dismissed entirely. What does work is providing your employees a window of a few hours so they can pick what time they come in.
In such situations, it is also important to establish a minimum hour requirement and ensure that all your employees adhere to it. This way you’re offering enough flexibility to facilitate productivity, but not leaving your young business without structure.
Apart from office timings, schedules also include deadlines, feedback dates, meetings and any other process where punctuality is of essence.
Focus on What’s Important
There are instances where you may have a bad day and be tempted to tell someone off for excessive internet use or to pull an employee up for the way they carry themselves. Where there are occasions where a little guidance and grooming is due, don’t lose sight of what is important.
If your employees are doing their bit, keeping with schedules, making deadlines, coming in for meetings prepared and following other basic office guidelines, don’t nitpick! Many high functioning employees tend to have unique ways of working which may be unconventional or hard to understand. Focus on results. Are they getting things done? If so, great! Don’t try to micromanage their process because you’ll likely end up losing potentially valuable team members.
Make it a rule to prioritize performance over all else.
Make Everyone Accountable
When you’re starting up, accountability is extremely important. You don’t want people taking work lightly. Make sure all employees, heads, management and whoever else is working for you is doing their bit. Don’t leave things open ended. Provide clear job descriptions so people know exactly what is expected of them from day one.
Make sure that a chain of accountability is followed and that everyone is delivering as expected. It should be clear that slacking and not doing what you’re meant to is frowned upon and may result in termination.
Discourage Power Play and Politics
Something that plagues startups and established organizations alike is power play and politics. Power play takes place when one employee exploits their position to make things harder for another whom they know has no choice but to take it.
Politics can be anything from deliberate and pointed badmouthing of others in the work environment as well as tale telling and creating conflict between employees. In either case, this isn’t good for productivity or office morale.
Try to ensure that the work environment you’re providing is healthy. Make polite communication a rule. Restrict needless disciplinary action and if the same needs to be taken, make sure the person issuing the complaint isn’t the one at fault.
If your employees feel cared for and the work environment is safe, you retain them for longer, spend less on training and improve productivity.
There are other office rules you could come up with, introduce and implement. Those mentioned however are a great way to get started. If you want to learn more about how you can benefit your new and growing startup, individuals like Makarand Utpat. Makarand is a corporate guru who helps entrepreneurs develop their businesses.
He offers innovative solutions to various startup related obstacles and is an expert in the field of digital marketing and outreach. You can learn more about what Makarand has to offer by reviewing some of his material.
We wish you success with your new business. All the best!