As a student, you know that a healthy culture at your startup is essential. But how exactly do you go about achieving that? Right now there are a lot of misconceptions about what it means to be a great manager. And so in this post, we’re going to investigate what successful people management actually involves.
Misconception Number 1: Your People Work For You
The purpose of management isn’t to get people to work for you. It’s to help people achieve the company’s ends. That means adopting whatever management practices happen to work.
Misconception Number 2: Competent Co-Workers Manage Themselves
Many student entrepreneurs think that their co-workers don’t need management. They just assume that the people they have are great and can work out any problem. But the people who work with student entrepreneurs often don't have an eye on the bigger picture. Kelly Azevedo from She’s Got Systems, recommends that you regularly check in on projects. Make sure that your vision for the company, and that of your coworkers, is aligned.
Misconception Number 3: Outsourcing Sales Will Help You Business Grow
Grabbing the nearest salesperson you can find and putting them to work on your business isn’t the best strategy. Highly competent salespeople are unlikely to want to join your startup. They can get far more pay and commission from established vendors.
The best strategy as a student entrepreneur is to convince others of the importance of your product. You need to develop gravitas with others and build your own sales. People are interested in your product and what it can do. And so, at least, to begin with, growing should fall to you.
Misconception Number 4: Fewer Employees Are Easier To Manage
Even startups that only have a handful of staff can often find that managing those people is time-consuming. Some workers are great when it comes to self-directed work. But others can end up draining both time and resources. The solution is to grab the best HR tool you can find to manage all the people who work with you from a single hub. Software now allows you to keep track of paperwork, pay and time off work.
Misconception Number 5: Managing People Online Is Just As Good As In Person
David Mainiero from InGenius Prep likens running a company to having a family. When you’re building a team, he says, you’re cultivating family-like relationships. This, of course, isn’t done remotely. It’s an experience that's shared by everybody in a place of work. Many students, of course, won’t find this easy to do. After all, it’s hard to grab an office while you’re studying on campus. But getting together once a week in somebody's dorm room is a good start.
Google founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, worked together on Google from their dorm room. And from there, they built a company with the best employee reputation in the world. Working together in person is one of the reasons why big companies end up being so successful.
Ashley Richardson is the Chief Marketing Officer and the latest addition to the Zenruption team. She studied at Boise State Unversity and changed her major 12 times before finding her true love in the study of Law. Her life goals include traveling the world, petting all the cats and burning the establishment to the ground. Yeah, we think she kicks much ass and her cat is pretty cool too.
Feature photo courtesy of Flickr, under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial license