Scaling isn't easy no matter the business. It takes hard work, a great product, and dedication. However, more than anything else, you need a phenomenal team. Finding the right people is the key to scaling your organization. You need people who are not only passionate, smart, and experienced, but you also need to find those who work well together. A company's culture can either attract and retain phenomenal talent or drive it away. Here are a few things I've learned along the way on building effective teams:

  1. Try to get it right the first time. Take your time. Make sure the candidate is a match for the role you are looking to fill, and that they are a fit for your company culture. They are equally important. It is VERY expensive to make poor hiring decisions. I've definitely learned this the hard way.
  2. When you get it wrong, fix it fast. You know when you have that feeling that someone is never going to perform the way you need them to, or they constantly cause problems on your team? Move on as quickly as you can. Bad breeds more bad.
  3. Think of your team as an actual team. No individual superstar wins a championship alone. A team only wins if they function like a team! Everyone has to be "in it to win it" equally. Respect and hard work from all team members should be required. Make sure to look for strong, team player qualities when you hire.
  4. Accountability is key. When things go wrong, focus on pushing towards a solution. Although we care for our teammates, this is business. Be clear and calm, and if a mistake is made, then let them know that you expect to see them learn from it. It's usually a great sign when someone can own up to a mistake. Look out for those who are always defensive and never wrong. See #2.
  5. Reward hard work. No one should receive a gold star for simply showing up, but do make sure to celebrate the wins along the way and when people go the extra mile. Praise for a job well done can go a long way.

Above all, don't make sacrifices and hire people simply because you really need the role filled. Create excitement around the goals being set, and cultivate a team environment with excellent people who work hard and with honesty and respect. If you get this right, the sky's the limit!