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How to build a great startup team

Posted by: Jane Levesque on August 23, 2012

There’s a myth in society that single individuals are creating companies, but Sean Griffin of StartUp Academy believes no one has ever achieved anything of greatness without a team. “A team is an essential component of your success,” he says.

In developing your startup team, Griffin suggests starting with a core team that will be at the heart of your business. He says one person can only be good at one of these three core roles:

  • A financial manager who understands how to increase revenue and reduce expenses
  • Someone who is good at promotion and sales and gets people to buy your product
  • An ideator who comes up with the ideas

Since it’s rare for anyone to be good at two of these, Griffin suggests asking, “Which of these three is your core strength? And then build your team around it.”

Once your core team is in place, you need others to complete the team:

  • Designer for brochures or marketing pieces
  • Web developer and social media expert
  • Lawyer who is a partner to help advise you and tell you your options
  • PR person who understands when to release the company story
  • Accountant to work with financial manager
  • Researcher who listens to your customers and understands their feedback
  • Salesperson
  • Banker who supports your business growth and helps you understand opportunities you may not see

Griffin recommends having an advisory board of government specialists, other entrepreneurs, CEOs, distribution specialists and marketers that wraps around the other parts of the team. “There’s nothing you can’t accomplish when you bring together a team,” he says.

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