After a little nudge from our CEO Evan Owens, I’m making my long awaited return to the blog. This time around, I’m going to share my thoughts from Steve Hindy and Tom Potter’s book Beer School.
The Interactive Consulting team started a book club at the beginning of the year. As we began reading Beer School, I initially thought I was going to love to hear how a brewery I enjoy so much came to grow. Little did I know that the tips and tricks Hindy shared for building your team would be the ones that would resonate the most. Growing your team as a company is tough, but as an entrepreneur, it is ten times as challenging. As Hindy says, “the skills and personality that enable a person to conceive and start a company are not necessarily the same skills that will enable a person to manage and institutionalize a maturing company.”
In my 3.5 years at Centresource, I have interacted with tens, maybe even hundreds of startups. The passion, excitement, and intelligence keeps me on my toes and wanting to contribute more to the scene.
Most startups come to Centresource and our startup-centric business unit, Interactive for Startups, because they need technical assistance (consulting or development), design (proof-of-concept or product) , go-to-market strategy or just a room full of smiling faces that want to see their success reach new heights. At times we are able to fill a role that they cannot as an individual or contribute a team to take their idea into production and to the market. Some entrepreneurs are reluctant to hire because “I don’t want to have to manage people”, ” I don’t trust anyone”, ” I can do that myself”, “I have an agency for that”. Now I’ll never argue against the last reason, but do see the value in strategically growing your team.
Here are the key points from Beer School that I think are most important for entrepreneurs as you look at what’s next for your team:
- Look to the pioneers to see what has and hasn’t worked
- One man or woman can’t do everything alone
- Delegate authority – figure where your passion lies and then hand off other responsibilities in order to best serve your CUSTOMERS
And one that wasn’t in Beer School, but is equally valuable:
Know the personality style of who you’re hiring. Make sure this person is someone that will coexist with you and not be out of their comfort zone, or more importantly, continue to push you too far out of your comfort zone. At Centresource, we all recently did DiSC assessments. The assessment came with a guide of how-to’s for your personality style. This allows us to manage and communicate with one another more effectively.
If you haven’t already, read Beer School. It’s quick, (has some pictures) and is full of valuable information no matter what position you’re in.