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Natalya Brinza Project Manager

How to Build Your Startup Team

Building a startup team is like making friends in anyone’s life: you may choose the communication circle or accidently meet it. It plays a huge role, from giving advice to solving problems, and more importantly, the main feature of a great friend as well as a good team is that they can be trusted. In this article, I’m going to tell you how to make a startup team so that you will never be let down.


Let’s imagine this situation: you have a brilliant startup idea and you want to bring it to life immediately. Well, do not hurry. At first you need to concentrate on your idea and give it a good thought. If you are sure that it is something you can, move on. At this stage of the startup building, (it’s called Pre-Seed) your perfect team is you (and may be your co-creator), idea and fans. So, after sharing your perfect creation with future fans, you need to start developing something. At this point you need to hire your first employee. If you're successful, your team will then start to grow through all the stages of Startup lifecycle.

Read alsoWhere Can I Find a Brilliant Idea for a Startup?


First employee

Continuing the theme of analogies with life, your first employee is like your first child. You will demand from him the most, but you will be proud of him also the most. I think there is no need to tell you why you need to hire your first employee instead of running the whole business by yourself . I'll only tell you one thing: it has saved a lot of businesses from shutting down just because their creators were neither tired or disappointed. Your first employee will help you with understanding how to build a startup team with no money.

You can find your first employee through many ways. For example, from friends or family, from social network (Linkedin, Facebook etc.) and from advertisements at specialized sites or newspapers. The main goal is to find someone that will understand you very well.

Check out this list of interesting questions for interview:

  • If you met an alien, how would you describe yourself to that being?
  • What annoys you in other people, and how do you deal with it?
  • Your favorite place to work?
  • Explain to me the difference between good and excellent.
  • Tell me about your failures.
  • What was the last book you read?
  • What would you do if you won the lottery?
  • How many golf balls can be fit in a school bus?

Read also: 5 Ways to Find and Hire the Best App Developers

Artjoker’s advices on team building

When you have more than one employee, it is time to think about building a better team. What do you know about it? When Artjoker was first created far off in 2006, our CEO, Roman, did not know anything about this term, but through years of experience, he, with the help of colleagues, figured out the main principles. So, here are Artjoker’s best advices on building your team:

  1. Develop the mission of the company so that every new employee will know at once where you are heading to. Artjoker’s mission is: “The priority for us is an individual approach to the development of clients' businesses, result-oriented process and also building of a long-term relationship. We are an intellectual team where mutual respect, open-mindness and striving for success are highly valued.”
  1. Build main values of the team and the company altogether. Artjoker’s values are upto 7, but the main ones are: work hard, support, invent, grow and be honest.
  1. Encourage people’s initiative for activities and further work and personal growth. For example, we have a whole bookcase full of useful and interesting stuff to which every member of the team has an access.
  1. Grow the corporate policy. It may include everything you want to employ to improve team building (but within reasonable limits).
  1. Hire a professional Human Resources manager. If you have enough money to do this, it will definitely simplify your life a lot because HR’s main task is to do everything for great team building.
  1. Insert gamification. We have done it in 2014 and now improving it every once in a while. If you don’t know anything about gamification, we advise you to read the book “The Gamification Revolution. How Leaders Leverage Game Mechanics 
to Crush the Competition” by Gabe Zichermann and Joselin Linder - it will clarify everything you need to know.
  1. Innovate. Figure out new interesting ways to perfect your team building system.

Approaches of team building based on those advices include:

    • Parties

The highlight of this kind of party is its format of holding - it largely determines the success and effectiveness of the event. Effectiveness of the event can be provided by compiling scenario of the holiday by the employees themselves. They will be able to learn something new about the event, so there is a more positive attitude. This approach also provides another advantage - significant savings without expensive services of third-party companies creating holiday scenarios and conducting the event.


    • Sport trainings

Thanks to this approach of teambuilding, employees are given the opportunity to renew and establish relationships in the team, with the same experience for all, destroying existing barriers that have emerged as a result of certain working conflicts and disputes. But it is worthwhile to understand that teambuilding in case of wrong organization can cause negative consequences, provoking the loss of the leader's authority, deconsolidation of personnel, and the dismissal of certain employees. Therefore, you need to carefully consider the search for a coach (better based on feedback from your friends) and take into account the degree of sports training of employees.

  • Events in the work process

These activities are usually presented by learning trainings. Their conduct is aimed at bringing together the team of the company, with the adaptation of newcomers, the achievement of other positive effects.

In case of considering new employees events, then they are need to be offered an exceptional opportunity to meet colleagues in a few hours or days, ceasing to be strangers in the team. The colleagues will already have a certain idea about the new employee, starting to work more actively with him. In the normal working environment, the newcomer has to adapt to the team for months.

Also as part of the training, you can create, for example, the corporate code of your company. The document provides data on the traditions, values of the company, internal rules of interaction and behavior. If this document is simply appointed by top management, it is unlikely to bring a special effect. Quite another situation, when the employees of the company wrote it themselves, creating a code during an open discussion.


Firing someone can be really tough and tricky, but you should do this with maximum compassion. Do not (!) do this surprisingly. For example, a person works for you and one day you come to him and say, “You’re fired.” After this phrase anyone can have a heatstroke. Let it not be a news; tell every employee what exactly you think about their job at every stage. That’s your key to better understanding, especially in situations like firing. And if you can, try to help this person to find a new job where this individual can perform better.That’s how you build trust in a team.

That is all about the tips on how to build your startup team. I hope they will help you create the best staff members in the world and answered the question “How to build my team in startup?”

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author Liza Kerimova Liza Kerimova
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