How to Manage a Startup Team

The startup world has completely changed the way business is done. From office layouts to remote work to overall company culture, startups have become the new standard on how to set up and operate a company, and they’re growing higher and faster than ever before.

TechCrunch talked about how startups in the United States are continuously seeing a steady rise in interest and investment. So with that in mind, it’s important to look at the human element of any business, including startups: the employees. Managing a startup team has shown just how forward-thinking business leaders need to be. It’s easy to generate ideas, but if a startup team lacks communication or coordination, those ideas won’t make it very far.

Here’s how you can go about managing a startup more strategically.

Metrics, Metrics, and More Metrics

After writing out the company manifesto and looking into business coverage like a business owner policy (BOP) to protect against damage from a ping-pong tournament (those happen in startups), it’s time to put things in motion and measure just how successfully things are. It’s imperative to look over metrics to see what’s working, what’s not, and what can be improved upon. Start with the number of weekly sales calls made (if that’s your company), number of accounts closed/opened, which social media posts took off, and more. From here it’ll be clearer to see just what you can work on to be more successful.

Communication is Key

It’s important to stay on top of communication within a startup office. Some startups have remote workers, some only have remote workers, and some value a great deal of autonomy even with in-house employees. While no one wants someone looking over their shoulder while creating and brainstorming, it is important to keep communication levels open and high. Create a plan to check-in on project statuses like weekly team calls and make sure everyone has a team chat platform up and running, such as Skype or Microsoft Teams. Communication will help with alleviating issues with miscommunication.

Measuring Results

Depending on your company’s goals and services, it’s a general good rule of thumb to shine a light on metrics over metrics. Mentioned above, you need to have metrics and measurables in place. Now putting those metrics in motion will get everyone focused on the outcome. From here it’s up to leaders to communicate results and metrics to employees, which will enhance productivity as well as transparency. Email, conference calls, team meetings, etc. You pick the way to best share the results. From here, take suggestions on how to enhance results and create a town hall-type environment.


While it’s not a good management trait to just pass around work without taking on responsibility of your own, it is important to give work to employees to challenge them and help them grow. Startup culture is filled with leaders who like to be in control, so delegating may be difficult, but still needed. The most important thing to remember when delegating is to give full control away to the project leaders and trust that they can handle what is expected. Lead from afar, but be able to give over the reigns and step in when need be, essentially. Holding on to some duties will only create confusion on who is in control and what is expected out of your employees.

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