Creating a strong work culture is as important as developing a product or working on go-to-market strategy. A startup life is stressful and unforgiving and without a good work culture in place the risk of its failure grows exponentially. It is believed that the failure or quit rate of a new venture is around 50-60% during the initial 2 years. Leadership or Management is often considered a leading cause for a business closure which is often stated along with poor team composition, incompetence all linked directly with culture.
Culture is huge part of a startup. Planning a culture will depend on certain factors/questions like:
- The work life balance (If the people will stay late or will be required to work on weekends)
- Drills happening
- Kind of person the management will like to succeed
- Dress Code (Would the team wear flip-flops or suits to work)
Further the age of an entrepreneur will also play a role in deciding the culture built in a company. In case of an entrepreneur in their twenties something males, they see it as a continuation of their fun and free college lifestyle. The startup will attract more talent with similar profiles and will not create a diversified workforce. This will work well in the early days when the core technology is under development and there will be little requirement of a more guys to build the initial software. But it will turn a hindrance to attract more diverse talent, when the business starts to grow.
An older entrepreneur will prefer to have a more staid and formal culture. These startups will struggle to attract top-tier software developers who prefer working in a more relaxed environment.
The challenge of setting the right culture exists in any technology company, but is more profound in enterprise software business where the startup needs to strike the right
balance of relaxed, cool and more mature grown-ups. Culture isn’t something that a startup can figure out overnight. But their company’s culture will remain the most important key to their lasting success.
The job of a CEO is to do 3 things: build the best team, get resources, and communicate the mission.
– Nathan Hubbard, Twitter