Two types of people who are bane of the core team!!!

IT-Boon-Bane

One good idea out of 1000s will give birth to startup. It is the fiduciary responsibility of any Founder to evaluate all the 1000s and chose the best.

Never start a business if you don’t have some knowledge about the new business you are starting. After choosing the right idea out of the 1000s, spending enough time in gathering sufficient knowledge and history about that concept should be the first stage before doing market research about the new idea or concept.

After spending all these and investing the first chunk of money, we will make our concept take off and start showing the growth.

Here is where we will form our core team to take the business further. Each member of the core team should not only work as an employee but should also consider themselves as the founding member of the company/team.

If we are able to get a core team of this virtue, I bet, there won’t be a stage of closing down the business.

This applies and plays a vital role not only in Founding any company but also on starting a new business unit on an ongoing company.

There will be differences of opinion among these core team members on concept wise along with work nature too. The duty of the person who balances these and run the show are called as “leaders”.

Two types of people

In spite of being a leader, there will be two types of people who will become the real bane of the core team by playing a spoiling game.

They are:

1. People who believe, responsibilities are to be given rather than taken, and

2. People who believe they should be the key member on all initiatives.

Both of them are the real bane of the core team. They not only spoil their roles but also spoil the morale and binding of the entire core team. Both of them will knowingly or unknowingly inject negative thoughts into the mind of everyone around them.

How to identify them?

It is one of the tough jobs of any leader of a team or a company to identify these people. Becuase they would have already deep rooted their thoughts into the team and if any action taken against them for any genuine reason, will be seen as they are vindicated. 

1. Both of these characters would have been the outstanding performers but started showing slowdown now.

2. They would have the best knowledge of their respective roles but started playing silent spectator role in recent days

3. They would have been the most flexible during the starting days but become very rigid now

4. The first one would have started to whine out with the current responsibilities and will not show any interest in taking any new responsibilities.

5. The second one would not have completed the earlier given role but would assume he is smart enough and started expecting to be made as the key player of all new initiatives.

How to eradicate them?

Even after many personal discussion, their ego would not allow them to accept the reality and change. We will tolerate them for months just because they were the most wonderful people we had earlier.

But the need of the hour would not be allowing us to give more room to tolerate them. So rather than tolerating them, it is better to let them go so that at least we can maintain the friendship with them.

With the new company and new environment, they will automatically revert to their original capability and flexibility.

So it is good for both the company and the individuals to shake hands and “call it a day”.

Secret of Hiring a Sales Guy

home_guys

Sales are the Face and Marketing are the head of any organization. It is very true and if we don’t understand the difference then we will end up hiring a wrong person for the right job.

Sales Vs Marketing

To get into that we should know the difference between Sales and Marketing. Whenever I get a chance to interview sales guys I ask this question to them for sure.

Most of them will fail to explain. Some will explain in a very professional way. I will then ask them to summarize the same in a single line. I have seen 99% fail to explain it.

Maybe I am expecting them to tell what I wish to hear could be the reason. The answer I always wish to hear is “Sales is an art and Marketing is a science”

This is the reason we have Discipline as Marketing even in Business Administration courses and there is no specific degree for Sales. You can treat marketing to any person. But you can only train and bring the naturally having sales capabilities from a sales guy. If you force sales to a person who doesn’t have the flair for sales then he will surely fail.

Who should I hire?

International Cold Calling sales team is something which is there only for the last 13 years maximum and in that too very few companies has that capability in house for more than 5 years. Remaining all companies are having the conventional face to face meeting with the sales guys selling or inside sales team fixing the meeting and seniors go and do the real sales face to face.

So if a company wants to set up the new sales team, they will eventually look into those companies which are specialised in selling through cold calling and hire.

Typical Interview with those sales guys

Interviewer: Hi, How are you?

Sales guy: I am good.

I: Can you explain about yourself

SG: I am so and so, working with so and so company and have closed nearly 500K out of two deals in this year both F2000 clients

I: (in his mind voice) WOW

I: Where you able to reach your target?

S: Yes, even I got adjudged as the best sales guy for reaching my target last year.

I: What are your salary expectations and notice period?

Typically it will go and they will hire that guy.

End of the sixth month this guy would be the worst performing guy and either we would have fired him or he would have left the organisation.

I have seen this in many companies out of my experience.

What could be the reason for the best performer of the earlier company not able to perform here?

The reason is us. Yes, it is us!!!

He said he closed 500K with two F2000 clients. We typically took that as “he closed” . The real scenario could not be the same.

He would have reached the right person with his cold calling skills and the brand of his earlier company would have taken the remaining steps to get that 500K deal.

Here, we have seen 500K, F2000, One year target, etc and failed to see the real fact that he was not the reason for any of the above and he was reaching the right person through his cold calling skills and only his company was able to do the remaining.

Conclusion

He is not just the nonperformer we are also the partial reason for the total failure. We have overrated his capabilities with whatever he bloated and told during the interview and failed to judge his capabilities.

So whenever you are interviewing from a most successful company into your sales team try to evaluate his personal capabilities rather than what the company was able to achieve with his cold calling.

Typically, if you are a company size of fewer than 150 employees, then avoid hiring sales guys from company size of more than 200 employees.

 

Is there a real slow down in Startup Funding?

The answer could be a yes when compared to 2014 and 2015. Where it was about 7.1 Billion USD and now we are not even sure of reaching half of it.

According to Traxcn data, Indian tech startups have raised nearly 959 million dollars in the last quarter of 2015 which is less than a third of the 3.2 billion raised in the earlier quarter. But it is again just half of what they have raised during the Q4 of 2014 which is 1.9 billion.

WSJ

Does that mean the Funding has dried totally?

No, the amount of startups aroused in the last two years is huge and most of these startups got really well funded in 2014 and 2015.

But the real problem started here. Apart from the very well known Startups many of them are not able to get the next level of funding. Especially sectors like Food and Real Estate which got the real hit. The companies which are failed to get the next level of funding are predominantly from these segments.

There are huge competitions in these segments and so the factor that determines the uniqueness of these companies are missing.

Real Scenario

The real scenario is that the investors are becoming more concern on large funding and if they really see some traction on any such startups then their expectation of stakes are really high when compared to 2014 and 2015. This is clearly showing that the investors are aiming for quicker profitability.

On the other hand, the Startups are on the other path. Since they have understood the market very well, their main aim is to get funded as much as possible at the quickest  and exit as quick as possible too.

To be frank, you can very well see that there is not much long term aim or goal for most of these small startups.

Cleanup

This is nothing but a real froth which would not continue forever. There needs to be a cleansing  required and which has already started. There will be a vanishing stage of most of the “one another startup” following which the funding will once again come to the normal track.

Did the froth affect the genuine Investors? No, funding for the deserved startup is still going on as normal.

Need of investors

Investing is the prime of any investor. But the investing firm also needs to get sailed in this slowdown. End of the day, the balance sheet of these investment firms are going to impact their existence too. They want to show a good balance sheet than their rivals for their existence too.

Plan B – Course Correction

As I always say, the best practise of any firm or industry is to have a Plan B. That is the course correction. This is exactly what is happening in Indian Tech Start-Up Funding Industry.

Indian Tech startups got heavily funded in the last 2 to 2.5 years and many of them are not able to cross the Series A funding. This is the major reason for the funding industry to have a slow down and take the course correction.

So there is no need to worry as the funding industry is completely dried. It didn’t and it will not too. This is just a cleansing happening. Moreover, the so-called funding industry has nothing to do other than to fund again rather than keeping their money parked at one place. They are not meant to park money. They are there for the purpose of rotating the money and growing it as much as possible.

Conclusion

The amount of money got funded and the number of startups got funded in the last 2 or 3 years are phenomenally high and either they should get funded to the next level or shut down. This has already started and that is what is seen as slow down. The sooner this cleansing happens the earlier the funding will get to its original speed.