Grow Your Tech Company & Stay Cool
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Shane M. O'Neill
Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
8/11/2014 | 1:21:04 PM
Make it YOUR hierarchy
Of the many good tips here, the line "anticipate the size of the company you want to have a year from now" jumps out. There will always be a hierarchy of some sort, but create the hierarchy that will best support the company you're becoming. Not the hierarchy that worked for another company.
User Rank: Ninja
8/4/2014 | 3:42:47 PM
Re: Grow Your Tech Company & Stay Cool
This is an issue that startups have struggled with since the word 'startup' was invented . As you say, Dustin, it stretches far beyond just engineering, and touches every aspect of business - after all, startups have been losing their culture since long before what we would call modern 'processes' even existed. It sounds easy in theory - in fact, it even sounds like a flimsy thing to complain about. 'Don't lose your culture' it sounds like something out of an afterschool special. Yet, as you point out, the productivity and talent losses that come with it are very real. That's why you can't afford to ignore it.

Some of these I agree with, and others not so much. On Mr. Roca's chart for example (thanks for the reading material), the intent seems clear - each organizational system has it's own strengths and weaknesses, rather than some being better than others. Even still, his wording seems a little loaded, painting some things as negative that I would paint as more neutral.  After all, companies of all four types have been succesful. You also mention that the hiring process should be 'based on objective grading' while still allowing room for immediate termination for subjective 'bad fits'. You can't always have the best of both worlds - some things have to be one way or the other.
Lorna Garey
Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
8/4/2014 | 1:48:21 PM
Jenga is a fantastic analogy
A friend works for a company that depends heavily on its people and has gotten much larger over the past year. New executive leadership promptly brought in former colleagues and gave them the fancy titles you mention, passing over long-term employees. There's already been some attrition, with a ton of institutional knowledge walking out the door. I get the idea that as a CxO you want to surround yourself with familiar faces, but this seems short-sighted.

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