Managing Employees in a Startup

October 16th 2019 at 11:20am Published by firstdownadmin

Startup employees having a meeting

Welcome to the world of business startups. Being a small business owner or an entrepreneur as they call it has many roles and responsibilities associated with it. You have to make sure that you live true to all of the responsibilities so that you are able to achieve the end goal that you have in mind. Once you start your own business you have to take the role of the finance, marketing, operations and HR manager. Not only are you expected to make sure that the business rolls out in a manner that you expected, but you have to keep an eye on all of the employees working for you.

Slacking at the start of your business is often one of the many reasons why entrepreneurs end up seeing their dream of a startup going to waste. Since you don’t want your start up dream to go to waste, you must adapt to the challenges and take up whatever role that comes your way.

As part of the responsibilities that you oversee, one of the biggest responsibilities is to hire and manage employees properly. Your employees are an asset to you, and you want them to be taken good care of, so that they keep giving the performance and the standard that you expect from them. Hiring employees in a startup is not something that comes without effort. You need to make sure that the right employees are recruited and should make sure that you set the culture. Once you set the culture, you should look to hire people that best match that culture and can fit in it, rather than you having to force some changes.

Hiring and managing employees is a complex task, something which we expect you to know all about once you have your own start-up. Considering the complexity of the task at hand, we believe that every bit of help can do wonders for you. Here we help you decide the right hiring strategy for you, so that you hire well and get the best employees for your startup.

Recruitment Strategies

Since recruitment is the first step of the hiring process, it is best that we first discuss the challenges you can face here. Recruitment includes short listing and hiring all candidates you believe would be best for your business. Now, you might think that all candidates bring their own skill sets and attitude, but you need to make sure that the candidates you hire have an attitude that best resonates with the kind of expectations you have from your brand.

Recruiting the best candidates for your startup can often pose a major challenge. Considering the challenge, we mention some of the strategies you can follow for helping yourself out of the mess that you have gotten into.

Treat Applicants Well

Whenever you receive the details of a high quality candidate that can be best for your brand, you need to make sure that you treat them well. Employees have multiple companies contacting them today, which is why they know all about which company is treating them well and which isn’t.

By treating the candidates or applicants well, we mean that you should follow a time schedule and should make sure that you stick to it through thick or thin. You seriously cannot slack on the time schedule that you have with you, as that is what will define the success of your startup for the time to come. You should be careful about the recruitment methods you follow.

Give your candidate a call as soon as you shortlist them, so that they can expect an interview or an onboarding call soon. Do not leave your candidate hanging for a month and then call them saying that you were a bit occupied and would want to tell them that they have been hired for the position they applied at.

Time is as big a resource for your candidates as it is for you, so make sure that the whole process you follow is done in a timely manner. And, you should also know that the fast-paced market of today waits for no one when it comes to hiring the right candidate. The perfect candidate that you shortlisted for your job today can be taken by your competitors the very next day, which is why you need to be quick in your proceedings and should keep the candidate in line with whatever move you make.

Know the Costs and Benefits of the Hire

Entrepreneurs do not live on regret; instead they live on thinking every decision a million times before they eventually end up making it. You should also think the decision to hire extra staff a million times before you actually make the hire. You do not want a situation where you hire somebody and don’t have the right working capital to bear their expenses. If you believe that hiring extra employees could lead you to a cash crunch, then you need to have options for a small business funding shortlisted beforehand.

To help make the thinking or the analysis process easier for yourself, you should make a detailed list of pros and cons to decide which employees would be perfect for your needs and whether you really need to hire extra help for your organization in this moment of time.

Some of the pros and cons of hiring employees as a startup include:


  • The cost of hiring. Obviously you will require investing a specific cost in running interviews, tests and what not.
  • Salary. Employees will require a good market competitive salary to work for you.
  • You will have to give taxes on the salary that you are giving to your employees.
  • Employees require benefits like medical insurance, which should be provided.
  • If you hire employees you need to provide them with seating space and equipment to work on. We’re talking of a traditional PC or a laptop.
  • Training should be done to make sure that your employees are able to do all tasks assigned to them in the best manner possible.
  • The onboarding process requires significant investment. If you add interactive activities, you will have to invest time as well.


The benefits or pros of hiring extra employees include:

  • The employees you hire would be specialized in the field they are hired for, which is why they will bring a lot of specialization to the mix. This specialization can help your brand get to the top.
  • Once you hire employees you would see your production capabilities rise and would witness an exceptional increase in sales as well.
  • Adding employees to your team is the equivalent of achieving your goal of expansion for your brand. As you keep adding employees to your team, you would keep growing as a business.
  • Adding employees to your team can give you some relief as well. Once the productions and operations reach a certain limit, you need specialized members to handle it.
  • Your company would develop and a culture would be set. A more professional outlook to work inside the premises.

All the new candidates you hire should add value of sorts to the organization. As your startup is small and is still at a growing stage, you cannot risk hiring employees that are a burden on your brand.

Try Remote Workers

Remote work is one of the biggest innovations in the workplace of today. Work managers across the globe have identified the benefits of remote workers and are going to them as a possible option for reducing the burden from their shoulders.

Remote workers bring a wide list of benefits to your organization. Some of the benefits they bring include:

  • Zero Management Costs: You have to incur nothing when it comes to managing remote workers. Not only do they work silently in their home, but they even tend to use their own personal computer for doing your work. You need to incur costs for computers and energy expenses when it comes to in-house workers, but this isn’t the case for remote workers.
  • Flexible Schedules: In-house workers can only do the work assigned to them when they are inside your premises. They have specific hours when they are in your premises, where they can help you out with the tasks you expect from them. Remote workers on the other hand are pretty much available across the clock. You have a decided agreement with them can work can come up at any given time, and they have to be ready for accepting it and handing the finalized work over in the time that is given to them.
  • Reduced Costs: Remote workers reduce the costs or expenses you have to bear for looking after your expenses. Since they don’t have to come dressed up to work every day, you can also pay them less for the services they do. Moreover, you can also save costs on heating and lighting when it comes to remote workers. All in all it is a healthy idea for you to follow.

While we have discussed the benefits of remote workers, there are also some downsides that you should know of. First of all, remote workers are hard to manage. You do not anything about their work habits, and communicating with them is a big hassle. You have to go through constant communication barriers to get a simple message across to them. Unless or until you have a flawless ERP that is made in line with the needs of remote workers, you will be unable to manage them in the manner that is required of you.

Look for Previous Startup Experience

Many entrepreneurs want to know what exactly they should be looking for when they go out to hire potential employees. We believe that you should look to hire potential employees that have previous experience with a startup. Previous experience with a startup would mean that your employee is well established to handle all the different kinds of problems and hassle that can spring up within your new organization as well. An employee that has previous first-hand experience working with a startup similar to yours will know all the ins and outs of managing the complexities that come with handling such a line of work. We believe that you should look for experience over capabilities. An experienced employee wouldn’t require significant training as well, so you can get them straight to work, rather than training them about the basics required for handling the job that is expected out of them.

Use Employee Referral Program

As a startup, you cannot run a significant recruitment process where you spend multiple resources looking for the best fit for your organization. While the market is full of candidates, you need to make sure that the person you get is best suited for you and comes to your organization, rather than you having to run multiple recruitment drives for them. The best way to reduce the expenditure for hiring candidates is to use an employee referral program.

An employee referral program would give your employees the freedom to refer employees to you. They can go through their social circles, including the friends and family they have to decide who is best suited for the kind of job role you are looking for. Once they find someone with the specific capabilities, they can refer them to you for the job.

To motivate your current employees into referring their friends and family, you should put a small bonus amount that will be paid to an employee when their referral gets hired. This will motivate employees into referring employees that are capable of getting hired.

Managing New Startup Employees

While we have talked all about the best recruitment strategies, it is now time to discuss some of the best tips for managing the employees in your new startup. Go through these tips and follow them for your business as well to get the best results possible from the process.

Begin Onboarding Early

The onboarding process is necessary for introducing your employees to the organization. Since you’re no Apple or Google (yet), you have to make the onboarding process fast and simple. You’re a growing organization and all of your employees or new hiring would realize that the onboarding process is simple.

Make the onboarding process less about glamour and more about introducing your employees to the culture within your organization. We understand that you might not have an established culture as of yet, but this is the time to think about setting your culture the right way. If you have been thinking about a possible culture for your brand, then now is the time to talk about actualizing it and hitting the ball out of the park.

Create a Schedule

You have to create a schedule that your new hires can conveniently follow when they are working for you. From the onboarding process to their timings when they are working for you, everything should be discussed as part of this schedule, so that your employees know what they have signed up for.

Giving a schedule of daily tasks to employees also helps improve the urgency with which they do their work. You don’t want a situation, where your employees have to go through undue hassle, because the schedule hasn’t been clarified to them.

Also, as part of the schedule, you should clarify the seating arrangements that you would like for them. Make sure that you follow a hierarchical setup when it comes to the seating arrangements. If you have space inside your office, you should ensure separate rooms for managers, while employees can be given separate cubicles. What matters most here is that your staff should be able to work in synergy without worrying about the small details.

Handle Introductions

Introductions are necessary when it comes to hiring. Within introductions you can either go for casual details or formal occasions, but the choice is always yours. An introduction allows your candidates to cozy up with each other and break the ice that they have within each other currently.

The best way to introduce your employees to each other is to have formal activities in the onboarding week or period. You should have your employees get to know each other and talk to each other, so that they don’t only know the likes and dislikes of everyone around, but can also work together when it is time for them to work together for achieving the goals that are required of them.

You can handle the onboarding process based on your requirements from the staff you have just hired. If you want them to start work immediately, then a thorough and extensive onboarding process won’t be right for you, but if you have some time on your hands, you can follow the right tactics to motivate your staff from the word go. Also make sure that your employees know who the right guy is for handling different jobs. If you have a formal meet and greet, let all new employees know who they should go to in the event of different problems they face in the workplace.

Empower Your Team

While you might be tempted into micromanaging your team and having an eye on everything they do at work, we believe that you should empower them to achieve the desired results without you intermingling in the work they are doing.

Your team should be allowed to reach solutions and conclusions based on their own understanding of problems concerning the organization. If you keep meddling in the work they are doing, there will come a time where they will not be motivated enough anymore. If you want to keep your team motivated, you should give them the space they need to be creative and to do their work in the best manner possible. Do not underestimate the needs of your team. If you keep meddling in the work that your employees are doing, there will come a time where they will be disgruntled at the level of supervision.

The best way is to make your employees realize the responsibilities from the start. Do not stand over them to prove your point, but give them a certain amount of freedom and empower them to work for the cumulative good of the company within that freedom. No organization was able to achieve success in a constrained environment, where employees aren’t happy with the work they are doing.

Keep Employees Motivated

Motivation is perhaps one of the most important factors in the workplace. You can compromise on all other factors, but you cannot compromise when it comes to motivating your staff.

There are numerous tactics proven to be successful when it comes to what you should do to motivate your staff. For starters, you should make sure that your staff members are given the freedom they need and are made to work within their own space. Following from what we have already mentioned above, employees should be made to feel motivated and empowered in the workplace.

You can also provide benefits and good competitive pay rates for your employees. More than the condition of the space they work in, employees are motivated by the pay and the benefits they get. You should give them a market competitive pay and good benefits, so that they feel proud while discussing the benefits provided by their organization in front of their friends.

Pay in Time

This is one thing that you should always follow. Most startup entrepreneurs err here, as they delay payments to employees because of a cash crunch. Not only would your employees leave if that is the case, but they would also feel unengaged in the work they are currently doing for you.

If you feel that you are running out of cash reserves, you should take an urgent small business funding or merchant cash advance to pay off the employees and be frugal with expenses to meet the repayment plan for the funding.

With all the tips above, you can surely manage your staff in a better manner to extract the best from them.