7 Traits of Extraordinary Team Builders

Great team leaders build great teams and great teams execute best when setting a foundation early.

As a venture capitalist, I get to peer into the soul and psyche of many early-stage companies. My observation of literally thousands of company reviews is that there is a wide spectrum of approaches to team building. Some set out to craft this from day one. Some are satisfied to let the team building and thus the culture evolve.

Those first weeks and months of your leadership is where you establish the foundation of the relationship between the company and your employees. As the founder/CEO/GM of the startup/company/division, you set the attitude and framework for the relationship. My experiences tell me that it is a lot easier to set it early rather than change it later.

Extraordinary leaders:

1. Create Appropriate Transparency

Today’s best employees demand to be informed of the meaningful progress of the company. For many it will be revenue or bookings. For others it may be the move to a new space, a change in leadership or a financing. Your task is to find the appropriate level and frequency of shared information. If in doubt–lean towards more rather then less. The best can handle it.

2. Set Clear Company, Team & Individual Objectives

A close cousin of the first trait is your ability to set clear and concise objectives. At Rand McNally where I hired 60 people in less than 6 months, this was an obvious requirement if we were going to be successful. It is easy to think that everyone on the team is executing to the same priorities. Wake up! They are not and you and you alone are responsible for creating a platform for setting and communicating objectives for the company, the teams and each employee.

Yes, friends, there are 5 count them 5 more extraordinary traits of extraordinary team builders located at INC.com.  Click over.  Its safe, I promise.

Speaker, investor, mentor, startup founder. One of 3 or 4 Co-Founders of MapQuest (sold to AOL for $1.2B). Managing Director of $25M Venture Fund in late 90's. CEO, COO or President of various companies ranging from $200k to $20M in size. One of two Managing Directors of The Startup Factory (35 investments across 7 cohorts), founder and MC of the Big Top Reverse Job Fair and national writer and speaker waxing poetic around startups and startup communities. Currently EIR @ Techstars with Brad Feld ~ Startup Communities, to help community leaders around the world grow their startup community.

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