Workers in startups are always juggling multiple responsibilities. This is what makes startup work so much fun: you’ll be talking to customers one minute, heading into an important business meeting the next and the following day you’ll be drawing up spreadsheets of sales data to report on your finances. While this requires a steep learning curve from all your employees, there are small ways in which you can help upskill your team on the job.
Here are four ideas to help you furnish your core startup team with more skills and knowledge this year:
There’s no question that the key skills in the business world for the future are all digital. Yes, communication and person-to-person skills remain important, but they can be left to your founder and CEO to handle when it comes to big business deals. The way to really impress your customers, and to handle your business with aplomb, is to be savvy on the digital side of your firm. This means getting to grips with cloud computing, and cloud computing certification will help you do that. It also means upskilling in the apps that your firm uses to complete the majority of its work, whether they’re Google, Microsoft or other applications and programs.
On the other hand, you do still need to be offering the highest level of customer service that you can when you’re working as a startup. One negative review can spread like wildfire and leave you struggling to gather momentum with new customers. That means that your customer service professionals, using highly-developed digital and social skills, need to be at your customers’ beck and call – and responsive to their changing needs – as your firm develops.
Your small startup team is more important to your business than its customers, investments or the business model that you’ve worked on for the past few months. They’re the people who will drive your firm forwards, and every little bit of extra motivation that you can inspire in them will help them to work better, and harder, for your company. In terms of upskilling, this means working your teamwork. Train your workers in collaborative apps. Take time to build teamwork skills outside of the job. And try to form close bonds of friendship between your team. This will help your workers assist one another in times of hardship.
You may believe that you only need one CFO in your firm in order to manage your finances, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. If you have a team of ten working on your startup, it’s likely that each one has a different area of responsibility – and each has a unique perspective to lend to your financial planning. Your sales and marketing worker, for instance, will be able to offer accurate sales prediction data. Your digital team will be able to track your growth online. And your market researcher will understand the price points of your competitors. All will offer better guidance to your CFO if trained in financial skills.
There you have it: four key skills that your startup team cannot do without as we head towards 2021.