The ability to manage a team is an important part of making sure your startup becomes a successful one in the long run.

Startup founders need to learn the rules of managing a team because the reality is that managing people is not really easy. However, it is a necessary skill for success in any business.

But first, let’s get clear on what a Startup is.

In simple terms, a startup is a newly established business.

Although most people think start-ups have to be related to tech, the truth is, a small business owner is a startup owner.

If you run a startup or business, you need people to grow, you need a team(whether it’s a two men team or a 10 men team) and that means you need to hire people and know how to manage them. Or better still, you can hire someone for the sole purpose of managing your team for you.

Management can be a difficult situation for the first time. This post will show you simple tips you need as a first-time founder that will prepare you to lead your team successfully.

1. Hire the right people.

Everyone has unique skills and abilities so you can’t expect one person to be able to do everything.
Different people have different personalities.

This means you need to hire people that will work well together. This can be done by carrying out personality trait tests.

2. Set clear expectations.

As Jim Collins, the author of the best-selling management books “Good to Great” and “Built to Last,” is fond of saying: “If you have more than three priorities, you don’t have any.”

It will be impossible to achieve your team goals if you don’t set expectations with definite priorities with your team members from the onset. Make sure they’re clear on what you expect from them including communication skills, productivity level, outcomes, and etiquette.

Read more about founders here:https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.nytimes.com/guides/business/manage-a-successful-team&ved=2ahUKEwjQ7MKsh4H5AhUjgHMKHQM1AWwQFnoECB8QAQ&usg=AOvVaw0KHAqhWNJcjLdJlWSFiV9d

3. Create systems and processes.

One of the keys to managing a team is to avoid micro-managing them. You can do this by creating systems and processes they can use to get the job done.

This will also help to reduce their workload and create space for them to shine and be more productive.

4. Respect your team.

If you want to attract high-quality people, you need to respect them. Respect can be done by; Compensating them, and not expecting too much from them.

Don’t expect things that are unachievable, for example; expecting them to work 90 hours a week for you when they are contracted employees or expecting the Graphics Designer to do the work of the Content Marketer.

5. Have a proper line of communication.

Sometimes teams don’t work because there is a communication breakdown.
This is why a big part of managing a team is having different lines of communication.

Fortunately, there are various online tools that can allow you to do this.

Managing a team successfully also demands you to be clear and direct when communicating.

For example, proper delegation of tasks requires that you know how to communicate what you need. Without this, your team members have no idea what they should do or what you want.

As a founder, if you’re hiring a manager or managing your team yourself, these tips are guidelines to avoiding any setbacks or failures.

Read about self care tips here:https://sparkhub.ng/self-care-activities-for-entrepreneurs/

Self-Care: 9 Brilliant Tips for Entrepreneurs 

Self-Care Tips for Entrepreneurs

Taking care of oneself is very vital and as entrepreneurs or founders, you need to prioritise self-care.

Entrepreneurs can be very terrible at taking care of themselves. They know nothing about self- care and even when they do, they do nothing about it. 

Entrepreneurs prioritize work over their well-being. They will rather pride themselves on working long hours, staring at their computer screens for over 16 hours per day, having sleepless nights, not having a flair for activities outside work, and barely taking some time to rest. 

While your activities as an entrepreneur or a founder are to provide solutions to pressing problems and the needs of people, you also need to pay attention to your wellbeing. Your personal health/wellness is of several dimensions. However, self-care activities attend directly to your physical health and mental health.

It is very possible to build a successful business and still achieve and maintain good health and well-being. 

Any activity you carry out to improve and/or preserve your health is a self-care activity. Self-care requires you to act deliberately.  

Importance of Self-care Activities

  1. Self-care helps prioritize yourself. It doesn’t always have to be building solutions for people, helping people to live better and making processes easier for people. You also get to prioritize yourself, putting your wellness and yourself first.  This helps you respect yourself too. 
  1. Self-care reset your mind and body. Like a reset button, self-care helps you get yourself back together when you feel down or you are experiencing burn-out or block. Entrepreneurs/founders’ minds work constantly, thinking of a product bug, trying to come up with the next solution, and devising methods to remain relevant in the market and other related business operations. While this is good, take some moments to just unwind, reset your mind and body and even boost your productivity as you get to relax and be rejuvenated/re-energized. 
  1. Self-care allows you to create a better relationship with yourself. Spending some time to take care of yourself helps you discover your interest, your personal needs, and what makes you happy among other discoveries. 
  1. Self-care helps you deal with work stress and pressure which enhances your performance. 
  1. Self-care activities help you improve the quality of your life. 

Every minute spent taking care of yourself is never a waste. The real waste of time is the time spent recovering from a health issue caused by you neglecting to take care of yourself. 

Self-care activities do not even take so much time yet, they are super rewarding. 

Self-Care Tips for Entrepreneurs

So what are the self-care activities that entrepreneurs/founders can engage in 

Self-Care Activities for Entrepreneurs/Founders

  1. Eat healthily and stay hydrated 

Eating healthy is important for the normal functioning of the body and mind. When you eat well,  you get in a better mood which will help you work better. Eating well also gives you the energy you need to work. 

Also, drinking water regularly is a healthy habit. It helps your heart and blood flow, oral hygiene, skin and kidney. Ensure that a bottle of water is close to you. 

  1. Exercise regularly

Exercise gets you in a good mood. Endorphins,  the chemical that makes you feel happy, are released during exercise. When you are happy, you work better. 

  1. Learn when to say no

You don’t have to always say ‘Yes’ to requests from people. Learn to say no and know when and how to politely say no. 

  1. Delegate and outsource duties 

There are some activities that you can delegate or outsource. You don’t have to do everything in your business. Hire capable hands and delegate duties. You can also outsource some activities such as house cleaning, and laundry to allow you more time for yourself.

Learn to ask for and receive help from people.

  1. Prepare ahead for the day

Before you begin the day, create a list of what you need to do and the goals you intend to achieve for that day Have a to-do list of your daily activities. It guides you and helps you prioritize the day. It helps you stay organized. 

  1. Take breaks

Don’t just sit and work for long hours. Take breaks, work around and chats with your employees or colleagues  

  1. Sleep well

Some entrepreneurs go with the belief that “sleep is for the weak”. 

Sorry to burst your bubble but sleep is good for you. Sleep boosts your productivity. It reset your body and mind. A nap is not a bad idea. Get enough sleep. 

  1. Meditate and journal

Meditation and journaling relax the mind and helps stay sane. As you make plans for your daily activities, also make a plan for a time to be with yourself. These are periods that you spend with yourself. Make space for a ‘Me’ time in your schedule.

  1. Engage in your hobbies

Outside work, what are the other things you love to do? Do them. Do what makes you happy and motivated. 

Go for regular massages, see movies, read some books for pleasure, cycle, go for a swim, enjoy the sunshine, take pictures and engage in activities that boost your mood, make you happy and energize you. Neglecting these simple tips could be you sending an invite to boredom, burn-out,  stressed life and even illness. 

Keep building useful solutions while also maintaining good physical and mental wellness.

Entrepreneurship: What It Is And What It’s Not

The Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurship, according to Daniel McClellan, is primarily motivated by an overwhelming need for achievement and a strong urge to build. 

It’s no gainsaying how the entrepreneurship has delved so deep into our economic and social life, a core source very pertinent to our survival.

Dear Reader, as understandable as the word ‘Entrepreneurship’ is or should I say, I presume, its core concept could be quite ambiguous in some cases, mistaken or misidentified with other related words close to it but not exactly it. 

Briefly, you and I would be taking a stroll down to understand the concept and fundamentals of Entrepreneurship, what it truly is and what it isn’t. 

What Is Entrepreneurship?

Entrepreneurship is creating, building and scaling a business or businesses to generate a profit.

Entrepreneurship is what people do to take their career and dreams into their own hands and lead it in the direction they want. It’s about building a life on your terms.”

Who is an Entrepreneur?

An entrepreneur starts an industry, undertakes risk, bears uncertainties, and performs the managerial functions of decision-making and coordi­nation.

An entrepreneur identifies a problem and works towards solving it. He provides products and services that solve problems and meet needs.

Entrepreneurs are not just founders. An employee of a business or company that possess and exemplify entrepreneurial behaviours is alo an employee. In this case, he is an intrapreneur.

There are also many different types of entrepreneurs which include:  solo, creative, technical, hybrid, team, serial entrepreneur or social entrepreneurs, and so on.

Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship

To begin with entrepreneurs are problem solvers. They identify problems and offer viable solutions. These solutions are sold to people in the form of products and services.

If you own a business and you are not solving a problem, you can not be considered an entrepreneur.

Here are a few fundamentals you need to know and understand as an entrepreneur:
  • Creating a solid business plan: Mapping out your brand and its identity would help you reach your goals faster. Having a well-detailed business plan gives your brand a well-organized structure, marketing and sales strategies and an edge over other competitors. 
  • Set up a realistic goal:  Having foresight of what your brand would look like is very necessary as such projection would lead you into questioning and deliberating what is truly needed for your brand. Question the duration it would take to gain profit and have a realistic amount of sales and interest to manage your finances.  
  • Know your marketing niche: As this field is quite competitive, staying on top of your game would require you to give an outstanding and unique selling point to make your service stand out! A unique selling point and compelling services help you pull your right audience.
  • Create a business model: This gives you a foresight on how sustainable your product would be and how durable it would go. A well-constructed business model doesn’t necessarily guarantee success, however, it projects, helps you experience and help you learn the failures that could affect your business .
  • Create a customer-friendly atmosphere: It is one thing to acquire customers and another thing to retain customers and have them loyal to your brand. Applying human elements in dealing with your client’s needs help you understand them and make them a priority. Running a cost-friendly promo and alongside delivering value services would win you into clients’ hearts.

What Entrepreneurship is and What it isn’t.

  • Entrepreneurship is not just about the act of buying and selling.
  • It comprises the ability to bear risk, to be empathic, and solution-driven, and have management and marketing skills alongside the ability to convince and negotiate. 
  • Entrepreneurship is about finding a long-lasting solution to a problem.
  • In the entrepreneurship world, making other competitors as a yardstick to measure your success would only make you lose focus.
  • You need to acquire soft skills to excel as an entrepreneur. 

In conclusion, dear reader, I would love to end this write up with a quote from Tim Ferriss, a popular and outstanding American entrepreneur, lifestyle guru and book writer. 

“An entrepreneur isn’t someone who owns a business, it’s someone who makes things happen.” — Tim Ferriss.

If you are an aspiring entrepreneur, I say in Tim Ferris’s words, go out there and make your brand happen!