As a startup grows, the business is going to experience growing pains. Properly scaling a company from a brand-new startup to a larger company comes with necessary shifts in culture and how various processes are handled. For employees, these changes can be jarring and you might find that your business is losing some of the momentum it had in the beginning when it was still a startup. You might realize the energy and excitement that once permeated the company is missing. However, it’s entirely possible to sustain startup energy in your business and retain that mindset even as you grow in order to reap the many benefits.
One of the biggest problems a company faces as it grows is that management begins making decisions and changes without taking into account employees’ opinions. If you want to maintain startup energy, it’s important to encourage employees to communicate their concerns and ideas without fear of pushback from management. Send out anonymous feedback surveys and host regular opportunities for employees to voice their concerns.
Look for innovative ideas
A great aspect of startup culture is the abundance of innovative ideas and excitement. This attitude is what you want to sustain in your employees, so continue providing opportunities for them to brainstorm and share innovative ideas. Avoid getting bogged down in a corporate mindset where employees simply stick to the same routine each day.
Keep telling your story
As you hire new employees, it’s important to tell them the story of your company. If you want to encourage the startup mentality in your newest hires, getting them excited about the company and how it started is a great way to jumpstart startup energy.
Stay cautious with hiring
As your business grows, it can be tempting to hire ahead for anticipated growth. However, it’s important to remain cautious with hiring and avoid bringing on more employees than you can sustain. If you hire too quickly and have to let people go, it’ll lead to low morale and distrust of the company. It’s also important to consider whether or not new employees are the correct fit for company culture. Carefully interview to determine if a potential new hire is the best fit for maintaining startup culture.
Continue making connections
Early on, it’s much easier for employees to get to know one another and connect at the office and outside of work. When your company begins growing and you start hiring more people, making these connections becomes more difficult. It’s important to continue to plan activities in and out of work for employees to get to know one another; consider planning a company picnic or happy hour and having regular team building exercises.