Published on March 3, 2014
How to build killer teams in start-up environments The views are based on personal experience. 1
What differentiates start-ups? 2
An Analogy To build a killer app / To build a killer product 1. Fairly clear idea organization 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Solid architecture Good implementation and thorough testing Easy deployment and support Enhancements Performance and scalability 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Clear vision Solid foundation Excellent mechanism for team selection Conducive and transparent env. Training and mentoring Growth opportunities 3
HR Challenges Recruitment and selection related Training and mentoring related Offers and packages related Retention, growth, performance management…etc. 4
Recruitment and Selection Challenge Finding the “right” people Related issues / questions Exp. level? Campus hires or lateral hires? Depth v/s breadth Role: Manager? Architect? Lead? Programmer? Test engineer? Trainee? Single tasking or multi tasking? Tip Clear understanding of the requirements 5
Recruitment and Selection (contd.) Challenge Finding them at the “right” time Related issues / questions When to start looking? Skills that are difficult to find Notice period for lateral hires Calendar for campus hires Tip Provide for 6 to 8 weeks for the person to be on-board 6
Recruitment and Selection (contd.) Challenge Where to find the people? Sources Job portals News paper ads Reference networks Academic institutions Recruiters Tip Reference networks work the best! 7
Campus Hires or Lateral Hires? Campus hires Tend to be highly bonded with the first employer Enthusiastic about taking up challenges Can be groomed for multiple functions Lack the learning acquired through experience Lateral hires Bring up avg. exp. level of the company Maturity in following practices May come with pre-conceived notions about management, tasks, functions.. 8
Engaging with Campus Hires Guide college projects Have visibility in academic institutions Visit project exhibitions, technical events in colleges Sponsor prizes, if possible Create a brand image as a technology company 9
Qualities / Skills Passion for work Long term perspective Technical depth Ability to see big picture Attention to details Desire to learn Professional ethics Aspirations 10
Right selection implies half job done! 11
Training and Mentoring Training for new hires / campus hires On-the-job mentoring for all Coaching for senior employees 12
New-hire Training Soft skills – communication, conferencing, e-mail writing, customer orientation, presentation, taking ownership, team work Sharing the vision and history 13
On-the-job Mentoring for All Continuous process with conscious efforts Technical lectures a must! Frequent feedback sessions Feedback for technical as well as nontechnical aspects Document / code reviews Adherence to processes 14
Training / Mentoring for Seniors Change of role Project managers Technical leads Test engineer / support engineer Training for interviewers Uniformity in hiring standards Areas to be tested in Track hiring feedback 15
How do you create bonding? Have a transparent, open environment Share past experiences during informal meetings Corporate culture or college culture? Generate a competitive environment through news group discussions, GoW problems, puzzles Respond to mails from employees Take interest in the employees and their nearones Develop ‘work while you work, play while you play’ culture 16
Few More Questions How do you nurture the team to take the ownership? How do you encourage team work and confidence in abilities of others? How do you convince them to work for you and not just for money? Does equity even work here? What value they see in your company? How does a start-up scale up hiring and training? How do you scale the corporate / engineering culture? 17
Thank You 18
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