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On the Importance of a Team

I was asked yesterday whether or not I felt overwhelmed. The question was referring to the rapid growth of SoapBox over the past year and also, I think, my age.

The answer I gave was unequivocally “no.” But I wasn’t boasting — or at least not boasting about myself and my inability to feel overwhelmed. I was boasting about my team.

You see, the success of Soapbox is built on a great team, of which I am just a part. Building this team has been key to the success of the company I co-founded. I didn’t embark on this journey alone and Soapbox would not have grown as it has if I’d tried to.

The truth is that without my team, I would feel overwhelmed. You would too. No one can run a company by themselves. No one can make all the decisions that need to be made at the pace that they need to be made. It’s just impossible.

As this article explains, companies set goals and these goals cannot be achieved by one person. As a leader you can set the goals, but you can’t reach them alone.

As a founder of a company you’ll make many decisions. These range from brand naming, to product design, to marketing, to culture, to budget, and back again twice over. However, the most important decision you’ll make will be who is on your team — who your co-founders are, who will go on this journey with you.

The people at your company will either make it succeed or your company will fail.

People are your company’s greatest asset. Fill your team with people you trust, people smarter than you, people you can rely on to make decisions that are great.

Focus an insane amount of energy on team. Don’t let anyone join your team who you have a single doubt about.  And once you have the right people, put the time into strengthening your group bond with team-building activities — it is worth the effort. This builds trust and mutual respect, which is crucial to developing a positive atmosphere in which everyone will puts in the joint efforts needed to achieve the company’s goals.

When you have a team around you that you trust — that you fully trust to be the best — then no, you won’t feel overwhelmed. Or at least I don’t (yet)!

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