Living and Giving

Bootstrapping, Part Two: You Need Entrepreneurial People–Not Just Entrepreneurs

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Bringing on the right team is crucial.  Entrepreneurs don’t have to hire other entrepreneurs, but they do have to hire entrepreneurial people. This is an important part of bootstrapping because you don\’t want to hire people who usually stick to only one area, at least at the beginning. They usually have to be able to to delve into two, three, four–sometimes seven different areas.  It\’s a subtle but important way to save on costs.

There’s a critical difference between being an entrepreneur (who is also entrepreneurial) and hiring entrepreneurial people. Entrepreneurial People (EPs) don’t necessarily want to start their own organization, or necessarily have visionary ideas. However, they are willing to do what it takes, create systems on the spot, not get scared off by the fact that certain processes aren’t yet in place (in fact, they relish creatively designing them).

In a bootstrapping culture–and I would argue we want to retain this feel throughout the tenure of your growth–your team can’t just be willing to do one thing.  In the early days, there is no one job description, and EPs love this. They want to delve in to realizing your vision for the company, by diving into different areas, providing a rich, varied professional experience.   Cross them over into two business units: Give them expertise they can cross reference back and forth, determining how they intersect, and how they can take action efficiently.

This focus should last beyond the early days of an entrepreneur, keeping our atmosphere and team with high motivation.