Alex G made us laugh during one of our frequent Skype conference calls earlier today. We were catching up on the progress of our technical build and G who is acting at the build’s project manager was reflecting on the joys of his role. He told us that trying to lead the technical team through to launch was akin to trying to steer a raft down an enormous set of white water rapids.
As we now enter calmer waters and edge ever closer to our alpha launch we thought it might be a good time to share some of our key learnings of the project so far – in the form of a list (of course):
1. Work with people you have worked with before and like
2. Play to their strengths – people perform much better when they focus on the tasks they like doing
3. For key requirements hire full-time contractors
4. Reward your team on a deliverables basis
5. Factor in a contingency for production times. Then triple it
6. Let the team set specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound objectives
7. If you run in to problems, focus on solutions as a team – finger pointing and shouting achieves very little
8. Manage expectations – yes, it’s an old cliché but it’s also so important
9. Get the right balance of realism and optimism – this is never easy to do as an entrepreneur but vitally important
10. Exercise regularly – even if you’re busy and working hard to meet a deadline – there is no better way to get rid of stress
11. Lastly, take time out to laugh, even when things seem really, really bad
Not sure this is anything like a definitive list but it is perhaps a start of one I will later publish on Snagsta. If you’d like me to add anything I would appreciate suggestions – while you’re at it, a couple of tips for Mr. G on white water rafting would be welcome too!
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