Equity for Early Employees in Early Stage Startups


I was asked by a reader how much equity he should give out to early employees and to service providers in a very early stage startup. Founders vs. Early Employees To help with this discussion, let me start with a definition of "early employee."

Do My Early Stage Investors Own Too Much Of The Company?

Ask The VC

More Context: I recently joined a very early stage company as their CEO. Most VCs in India say we are too early stage for them and we have just started looking at angel investment as an option. If they are, then the hired CEO and COO getting 10% equity each is probably not unreasonable given that the founders are separate from the investors. There are definitely cases where the early investors own too much of the company to make it fundable.

Trending Sources

The Importance of Proprietary Deal Flow in Early-Stage VC

Both Sides of the Table

What stage? I sorted out pretty early that lawyers were a great source of deal flow. Because entrepreneurs often went to lawyers at their earliest stages to get their company registration done. We are judging how well you are coached on stage.

The two reasons early stage investors should be active investors

The Equity Kicker

Transparency provided by the internet makes this true at all stages, but it’s especially true at the earliest stages where capital requirements have declined precipitously. Most of the best funds are embracing this trend and hiring dedicated teams so they can add more value.

Why Early-Stage VCs Should Be Careful About Intros from Bankers

Both Sides of the Table

What stage? I sorted out pretty early that lawyers were a great source of deal flow. Because entrepreneurs often went to lawyers at their earliest stages to get their company registration done. We are judging how well you are coached on stage.

5 Recruitment Tips For Early-Stage Startups

Inc Startups

When it comes to hiring the best engineers, competition is fierce. Here''s what you should do to attract their attention

3 useful tips to help your early stage startup acquire paying enterprise customers

The Next Web

As a B2B company, I am personally excited about this, but I am here to tell my fellow early-stage (seed-funded or unfunded) enterprise startup entrepreneurs that acquiring enterprise customers is no joke.

5 Early-Stage Investments You Need to Make

Inc Startups

He showed us, too--cutting our hair in the kitchen, growing fruits and vegetables, and never hiring anyone to clean our house or yard. Hire help. Hire the best employees, not the cheapest ones.

Zachary Bogue And Matt Ocko Launch Data Collective, An Early Stage Fund For Big Data Startups


Zachary Bogue And Matt Ocko Launch Data Collective, An Early Stage Fund For Big Data Startups. Founders Den co-founder and angel investor Zachary Bogue has joined forces with seasoned big data VC Matt Ocko , Metamarkets founder Michael Driscoll and Prismatic CEO Bradford Cross to launch Data Collective , the world’s first Big Data-only early stage investment fund. Startups. Mobile. Gadgets. Europe. Video. Enterprise. Venture. Social. GreenTech. Gaming. Opinion.

5 Secrets to Staffing an Early Stage Start-Up

Inc Startups

A good co-founder is vital, especially since co-founder issues are the reason many early start-up crash and burn," Fertik says. To survive the "make it or break it" stage of launching a start-up, find someone who will work through the tough times. Hire a forecaster.

How to Hire Your First Employee

Up and Running

Before you get there, however, you have to actually complete the interviewing, hiring, and onboarding process. Their responses ranged from practical tips on hiring to what to look for in a first employee. See Also: Is It Time to Hire an Employee? Hire for your weaknesses.

13 Ways to Ensure You Always Hire the Right Person

Up and Running

Here at Palo Alto Software , we take hiring pretty seriously. I should know—we just wrapped up a lengthy hiring process within the marketing department. To that end, I reached out to the Young Entrepreneur Council , to ask for their advice on how to avoid hiring the wrong person.

Hiring Developers Before Product/Market Fit?


Using my StartupRoar as a radar, I came across a great post by Gabriel Weinberg Do you really need a full-time hire for that? Hiring seems to be the preferred use of seed funds (by investors and founders), whereas I'd prefer a focus on customer acquisition. They are very early.

Early Stage Investments For Politicians


I've come across quite a few candidates and politicians who don't fully understand the importance of early stage investments, call it angel investing or whatever you will, for the startup ecosystem and the economy itself.

The What & Why of Hiring a Great Startup COO

View from Seed

Many startup CEOs hire COOs or launch companies with a co-founder carrying the title. When should founders hire one? For most of my career, I’ve served startups and early-stage companies as an operating executive or advisor. So Should You Hire a COO at Your Startup?

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Lessons Learned: Don't launch

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Friday, March 13, 2009 Dont launch Heres a common question I get from startups, especially in the early stages: when should we launch? This is the usual reason given for a marketing launch, but for most early stage startups, its a failure. If you dont know who the partners are, what they pay attention to, or what kind of message they are open to receiving - its too early to launch.

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How to Hire Your Dream Employee

The Startup Magazine

Anthony Hynes, CEO of corporate payment company eNett International has gone as far as advising employers to prioritize hiring for culture more than skills. The post How to Hire Your Dream Employee appeared first on The Startup Magazine.

Hiring Product Managers

The Product Guy

In our a recent live stream from one of our mentors of The Product Mentor , Jon Stross, lead a conversation around “Hiring Product Manager”. But my strength is in innovation, the Lean approach to product development and the managing ups and downs of early stage products.

How To Design a Successful Interview Process for Hiring Top Talent

Instigator Blog

Most companies don’t have a serious, repeatable interviewing process for hiring. At Standout Jobs (2007-2010) we hired some great people. That feedback is a testament -in part- to the effort we put into hiring and interviewing people. I’ve seen a lot of different hiring strategies, from the nonchalant to the super intense (even more than our approach, which I’ve shared below.) Note: Most of the hiring we did was in 2007-2008.

4 Tricks For Hiring Talent

Inc Startups

Hiring talent in the early stages of your company is crucial. Here's a guide to help

Fundraising? Be a Buyer, not a Seller


Most founders raise (or try to) far too early. Here’s the thing: At the early stage there’s tons of demand for capital and fewer sources. At the late stage ($10M+ revenue) the reverse is true. acqui-hiring yourself away), then settle in for the long haul.

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The Best Hires Are Right Under Your Nose - Use This System to Never Miss Them Again

Redeye VC

99% of the time your best hires will come from your staff''s combined network — you might already know that. This article is about how to proactively mine all the networks you have access to for early-stage hiring excellence. As a startup leader, it''s critical to land remarkable first hires because that''s where your next hires will come from. Do you know where your first 10 employees are going to come from? How about the next 10?

HighScore House is Hiring

Instigator Blog

One of the most important thing right now for HighScore House is hiring. It’s a great opportunity to join a very early stage startup (but one that has traction, data, support and funding.) HighScore House is a Year One Labs portfolio company.

The Controversial First Role to Hire After Your “A Round”

Both Sides of the Table

I’ve thought a lot about team construction of early stage companies. Who do you hire after you have a product built & shipped and being used in the market? Who do you hire when you raise that first $2-3 million?

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Startup Sales – Why Hiring Seasoned Reps May Not Work

Both Sides of the Table

Even if you don’t have “direct&# sales I would tell you that “everything is a sale&# including fund raising, hiring, getting press and doing business development. Early stage selling is way more “evangelical&# than process driven.

When The VC Asks: About Your Hiring Plan

Hunter Walker

Whether it’s adding capacity to an existing function (#MawrEngineers) or bringing new talents onboard (“we intend to make our first marketing hire”), glossing over these bullet points towards the back of the pitch deck would be a mistake. I’m interested in not just what these people will be doing but how and when they’ll be hired. So when Homebrew asks about your hiring plan, here’s what I’m often looking for: Unicorns Needed? Do You Know Who You’re Hiring?

The Executive Summary; Loosen Up a bit.

Scalable Startup

I often get inquiries about getting involved in early stage companies here and around the country. You hardly ever see a Silicon Valley startup without one, no matter how early stage. merge/acquire/acq-hire, drop yours for another better one. The Executive Summary. The beginning point to discussing a startup the Executive Summary of the company, which lays out the key facts about a startup in 1-2 pages. But I’ve noticed that in L.A.

If, Why, and How Founders Should Hire a “Professional” CEO

Reid Hoffman

I speak from personal experience, since I hired and partnered with a CEO, Jeff Weiner, very successfully at LinkedIn five years after co-founding the company. I love the early stages of building a company. Couldn’t we just hire a COO and have you stay as CEO?”.

Why You Should Hire 'Athletes'

Inc Startups

And they're the best type of employees you can hire at a start-up. After we closed our round of Series A funding for 42Floors , we began working on hiring the right people. These jacks-of-all-trades types are the best kind of early employee you can have at a start-up.

Design Staff ? Does your startup need a product overview video?

Design Staff

But it is almost never the right way for early-stage startups to communicate what their product does. It took me a while to realize that video is rarely the right way for early-stage startups to communicate what their product does. Design Staff. Photo by Alex Healing.

The Future of Startups 2013-2017

Scalable Startup

And the reason is because – the reason fundamentally is because now that you have got these things, you have — now that you have a computer in everybody’s hand, all of a sudden all these barriers — it used to be these barriers to market entry were so big, it used to be there just weren’t that many early adopters in the world. And then the other thing is companies are having — if you talk to anybody running a company, they are having real trouble hiring enough qualified people.

Why tech founders can’t hire in early salespeople

The Startup Toolkit

Spoiler: You can’t hire out sales because in the early days it’s about learning, not selling, and hired guns can’t bring back bad news. As a tech founder doing sales, you’ll find yourself constantly fantasising about hiring in a sales guy to take all your pain away. The problem is, early stage sales isn’t about making money. And when hired guns bring back bad news, they either get fired or ignored.

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Should Early Stage Startups Move to Austin because of Competencies?

Austin Startup

It follows up on my posts discussing why early stage startups should — or should not — move to Silicon Valley. Should Early Stage Startups Move to Austin because of Competencies? Eventually the company should graduate to hiring senior expertise across these functions.

Should Early Stage Startups Move to Austin because of Customers?

Austin Startup

It follows up on my posts discussing why early stage startups should — or should not — move to Silicon Valley. Should Early Stage Startups Move to Austin because of Customers? Silicon Valley is known for early adopters among both consumer and enterprise customers.

“It’s a Feature, Not a Company” – Build a Company

Scalable Startup

it might even create some value and get acq-hired. Angel Investor Business Development CEO Succession early stage founder Launch Revenue Growth Scalability startup startup CEO Tom Nora Uncategorized venture angel investor business Cash Flow CEO CEO blog CEOing CoFounder facebook first revenue google iOS leadership tom noraThis is a line that was pretty common in Silicon Valley until recently.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Boston Tech: 2016 Update

View from Seed

These companies have a long way to go until global dominance in many cases, but they are all growing, hiring, and strengthening the local community right now. On the early-stage side, this includes groups like Assemble , founded by Michael Skok, John Pearce, and C.A.

Why “Job Boards” and applying online do not work

Scalable Startup

Remember, job boards and online hiring were invented almost 20 years ago and popularized by Monster. Many article point out that networking and referrals are the most effective ways to get hired, and I tend to agree. There is also a lot of campaigning – with a weak economy and ineffective government help people want to help others that they know to get hired and survive all this. Many under-qualified get hired every day over better candidates.

5 Reasons to Hire More Moms

Inc Startups

Then I sought the advice of a former mentor and colleague, Dave Yarnold, who had just joined an early-stage startup, ServiceMax , as CEO. He hired me on the spot for a half-time job with the goal of shifting to a full-time VP role later on. Instead of one full-time generalist, I hired two experts who work fewer hours. There are so many phenomenal women who have much to contribute but have trouble finding organizations willing to hire in a flexible manner.

7 Things to Look for in Your First Hires

Inc Startups

Your first employees are often the most important hires you''ll make--so don''t move too fast. Your first hires are the most important in a start-up. As a serial entrepreneur, I can vouch for the necessity of great first hires. What''s your secret for making great startup hires

Guidelines For Interviewing At A Startup

Feld Thoughts

In addition to being an outstanding early stage / high growth executive, Chris has made a study of management in startups and is extremely thoughtful about what does and doesn’t work. Startups thrive when each person hired is smarter than the person hiring them. Ask CEOs of successful startups about their biggest challenge and they’ll often cite the inability to hire great people. By the way, Gnip is hiring !