I like working with small close knit teams, where each member is strong in a particular skill set. When brought together, such a team becomes a strong cohesive force. Decisions are made faster, delegating work is simpler and everyone has specific responsibilities which they cannot shy away from. When a certain team member is not performing at par with other members, it becomes clearly apparent, and brings a much greater degree of transparency to the team.
It is within these small teams that company cultures, ethics and vision is created. The original group of founders will always have a special bond with the company as compared to others who join later on. That bond should be displayed through the passion and dedication that each one of the founders brings to the business and what they do. In essence, they should become role models for all future members who join the team at a later stage.
For businesses to scale, teams have to become bigger. However, it is important that we retain the agility, flexibility and speed that we had with a smaller team. This is not so simple to acheive, however, with a strong set of values and a clear path about the company’s direction, it becomes easier than it actually appears to be. We should never really underestimate the value and strength of a strong foundational core. It is one of the things I feel a lot of start-ups lose, way too quickly, as they move up the ranks.