Compare managing a startup to that for a large corporation and you'll boost your chances of launching a successful startup.
Let's look at PEOPLE for startups today.
Do you want to be an entrepreneur?
Are you recruiting people for your startup?
To get your brain cells working, compare your thinking to that of Daniel Isenberg, a serial entrepreneur in this short blog from Schumpeter at the Economist.
Daniel contrasts the startup person with large corporation people as follows:
- Contrarian value creators. The entrepreneurs see things others do not, finding things in the fog. They see business opportunities where others see only dead ends. They surprise large corporate minds. Mo Ibrahim, the founder of Celtel, saw the possibility of bringing mobile phones to sub-Saharan African when telecoms giants saw only penniless peasants and logistical nightmares.
- Self-confidence that defies conventional wisdom.They are told they are crazy by leaders of established corporations. The semiconductor pioneers who founded Silicon Valley were derogatorily dubbed "cowboys" by the Fortune 500 and stuffy Wall Street bankers.
- Determination to overcome. After the plan is done, the doing starts. Execution of the dream runs into terrible troubles, walls, cliffs and barriers. Entrepreneurs keep going, see all of that as very hard yet simply what is expected along the trail to success. They do amazing things that are viewed by large corporate minds as not worth the trouble. Think of the insuperable problems faced by the Khalid Awan, founder of TCS, a Pakistan version of FedEx (Have you ever had to negotiate deals with gangs in mountains with AK47s?).
- Motivated by huge change, profits and fabulous wealth. They are thrilled by turning their first business profit. They celebrate each milestone and accomplishment, counting the rising wealth they and their stakeholders are building every day. How about inventing a radically different way of producing American gas and oil? That's what George Mitchell, the Texas oilman who pioneered fracking, did. He changed the world.
- Rule-breakers. Notorious trouble to established policy makers, the breed known as entrepreneur gets astounding things done in spite of the ever present threat of retaliation, both socially and commercially. The Internet boom was kicked off by entrepreneurs whose business model was outrageous: give it away for free (and they shall come, along with georgeous gobs of $ advertising revenue). The giant corporation mind does not think that way.
Ponder before you leap into a real startup. Screen the candidates for your new business using the above criteria. Think about what you should get out of a startup interview. Entrepreneurs are a special breed. So are large corporate people.
BOTTOM LINE: The specialness of the person who is ready to form, lead or join a new enterprise can be understood by contrasting them with large corporate people. That helps find the ones you want to join your new enterprise. Since people picking is the most important job of the founder CEO, it's a skill you'll want to get uber-good at doing. When you can, it will add a huge, very powerful element to your construction of your unfair advantage.
I wish you The Best on your Adventure!