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."

Careful about equity and options in early stage businesses


And then there are options: [Email readers, continue here…] Stock options or phantom stock are the tools of early stage businesses used to attract great talent when there is not enough cash to pay market rates. Close. This post is longer than usual.

Trending Sources

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.

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”. Jordan Bergtraum VP Product Management, ServiceChannel. Dominic Gadoury Director Product Management, ADP.

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.

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. We didnt manage todo that yet.

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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.

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. 1 CEO who doubles as head of product management. 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?

Startup Lessons: Board Management

Venture Chronicles

To recap, here is the series thus far: 1) Hiring 2) Dynamic Org Structures 3) Product First 4) Marketing. Entrepreneurship entrepreneurship Get Satisfaction management startup lessons Startups

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?”.

Leadership Evolution: How to Manage Managers

Inc Startups

Hiring great managers isn't enough. As your business grows, if you can't manage your managers, you'll halt growth. And so, when the business needs to appoint its first real managers, guess who are the natural pick for those positions?

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. It’s called Enterprise Performance Management, which is kind of a weird term. The Future of Startups 2013-2017, beginning of a series.

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.

Guidelines For Interviewing At A Startup

Feld Thoughts

My long time friend Chris Moody , president and COO of Gnip, has offered to write some guest posts on management – we’ll call the series Moody on Management. 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.

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

Why Talent Management should be a priority for entrepreneurs

Active Garage

With so many things to focus on, delegation and prioritization become important from an early stage. Before we look at why that’s a mistake, let’s start by defining what we mean by talent management. Here’s why talent management is so important.

Why You Should (Probably) Hire Specialists

Inc Startups

New research suggests the more valuable hire might be someone who can do one thing--but do it really well. Keith Murnighan of Northwestern University, conclude that companies have a “generalist bias,” even though they might get more value out of specialized hires.

33 Insider Tips For Getting Hired At A Startup


By being a part of the conversation, you just might catch the attention of a startup that’s hiring. Don’t wait to see a job posting : Actual startup job postings may not show up for quite some time, especially among those in the early stage.

5 Ways to Hire Superstar Talent Without Going Broke

Inc Startups

There''s a point in the growth cycle of every early stage company when an infusion of new talent is necessary. Sadly, many entrepreneurs behind startups with limited resources believe that hiring these stars is impossible. Manshoory scored big when he managed to woo Adam Chapnick, a former principal and employee of the leading crowdfunding platform, Indiegogo , into leaving his position to come on board at AssetAvenue. Surprise!

How to pinpoint the best hire for each stage in the business life cycle

Inc Startups

A startup in the development stage needs to hire a very different type of person than does a growth company aiming for maturity. Here''s how to match your next hire to your company''s unique stage in the business life cycle.

Use Equity to Hire the Best

Inc Startups

It’s a high-class problem to have: Your company’s growing quickly, and you need some superior talent to help you manage it. But early-stage companies should generally allocate at least 15 percent of their available shares for future key hires.

People Management: Startup Teams Should Dip but not Skip

Both Sides of the Table

A good early-stage CEO needs to be accessible, to be accountable for producing results and should be establishing the cultural norms of the company through direct leadership at all levels. As a content management system we had lots of write activities and went with Postgres.

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Managing Startups: Best Blog Posts of 2013

Platforms and Networks

Here''s my compilation of 2013''s best posts and books about managing startups. Models That Leverage Dominant Platforms Sangeet Choudary discusses how to manage startup growth strategies that piggyback upon an existing dominant platform, used by AirBnB, PayPal, etc. I assembled similar lists at the end of 2012 , 2011 , 2010 and 2009. Many thanks to all of the authors!

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Organizational Debt is like Technical debt – but worse

Steve Blank

But over time code/hardware written/built to validate hypotheses and find early customers can become unwieldy, difficult to maintain and incapable of scaling. Organizational debt is all the people/culture compromises made to “just get it done” in the early stages of a startup.

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The “Good” Student « Steve Blank

Steve Blank

And it hires very smart people from the best schools. BTW, by the standards mentioned in the Times article, the following people would never have been interviewed or hired at Google. Google is looking to hire workers.

The most valuable lessons I learned from managing a virtual team

The Next Web

Traditional office working is losing ground as the “best way” to work, and managers supporting it are either of a generation where using social technologies is seen as lazy or timewasting, or they have the wrong team – i.e. a team that requires intense scrutiny to keep it working. .


Google Engineer: How We Interview, How I’d Beat Us for Talent, & How Non-Technical Founders Should Approach Devs

View from Seed

I recently chatted with Saurya about how he approaches hiring engineers at Google and what founders can learn. That’s then passed onto a hiring committee, and they compare the feedback from all interviewers and the various scores, and they ultimately make the final decision.

Building a High-Tech Startup Team

Business Plan Blog

The single most important factor to raising capital for any tech startup is the management team. This is true for early stage funding as well as venture capital funding. Don’t hire people with skills and qualifications similar to yours. Early Stage.

How to Configure Your Startup Team

Both Sides of the Table

I am fond of quoting that about 70% of my investment decision of an early-stage company is the team. Don’t hire a homogenous team. Don’t listen to VCs who tell you to bring in the big guns early. If they join super early it is often a disaster.

Managing Startups: Best Posts of 2012

Platforms and Networks

Here's my compilation of 2012's best posts about managing startups. Vin Vacanti on excuses that kept Yipit from launching early. Ash Maurya published his book, Running Lean ; he describes the Lean Stack -- tools for managing hypothesis testing -- in a two-part post. Laura Klein on how to use personas , how to overcome reservations about shipping an early product version, and the importance of validating a problem, not a product.

Making the Perfect Hire

Inc Startups

As their core team expands, most face the same hiring dilemma. They need the in-the-trenches, get-things-done types who fit the culture and can eventually be managers, maybe even strategists. In the interview, he laid out a management plan for the sales force.

The Buskers Guide to Running a Tech Startup | VC’s, Remote Working, Hiring and more.

Business of Software Blog

She touched on many of her experiences in growing YouCanBook.me, from dealing to VC’s, to remote working, to the hiring process and their policy of ‘blind hiring’ to ensure the best people get the job based on merit alone, and shared actionable tips on each of these. 1: Hire Professional Musicians… Busking only takes you so far. You Can’t Busk Hiring. You need to have an actual [good] STRATEGY for hiring. Most people are NO HIRE (~95).

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What does it feel like to be the CEO of a start-up? 3 FULL TIME JOBS.

Scalable Startup

Managing and Properly Growing The Business – this includes several things, depending on the size of the enterprise: managing employees, administration, hiring, firing, leases, expenses, unhappy employees, fixing other problems, etc. Being the CEO of a startup is crazy, fun, very hard work, inclusive, humbling and of course can be quite rewarding. Weekends are meaningless. There is a continuous decision stream where each decision informs the next.

Building a Lifestyle Business in a Startup World

Up and Running

The allure of this narrative is obvious: the smartest kids in the room get to hire their friends and build a company with other people’s money. a fulfillment by Amazon business ), and hire someone to handle customer service, and you’ve freed up your time immensely while the store sells 24/7.

Managing Startups: Best Posts of 2011

Platforms and Networks

Here's my compilation of 2011's best posts about managing startups. Brant Cooper reviews biases that managers from different functions bring to the customer development process. Erica Swallow offers 10 tips for managing startup PR. Sales Management David Skok discusses how to build trusted sales relationships and interviews HubSpot VP-Sales Mark Roberge on SaaS sales best practices. Cindy Alvarez on how startups can hire the right "big company" employees.

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Episode 4: Signs You Need a Manager, Online Tools for Startups, and Our TV and Podcast Top Picks

Up and Running

This week, we discuss the Bplans article, 12 Signs You Need to Hire a Manager. Listen: Show notes: 12 Signs You Need to Hire a Manager – (:31). QUESTION: Do you have a story about adding a manager to your team? Are there signs you shouldn’t hire one?

How to Hire the Right PR Pro

Inc Startups

Very early stage companies, or those that are bootstrapped, might handle PR on their own. Still ready to hire some PR help? Check with business associates, friends, colleagues, and your trade association to see if anyone has had success in hiring outside PR.

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Startup Founders’ Favorite Interview Questions to Judge Early Team Fit

View from Seed

At seed-stage startups, especially companies with well-networked founders and investors, finding applicants who can do a job on paper is not overly difficult. Here’s what we learned… Hire a Missionary. If it’s a seed-stage hire, you should already know the person.