I just read a post on Fast Company about life in start-up companies. The author discusses what it is about a start-up company that makes it a hotbed of innovation and creativity.
Overall, start ups have a high sense of urgency, and in successful start ups, everyone has that high sense of urgency or higher energy level that compels them to keep moving forward and trying to succeed. The high sense of urgency results in people working together even when it may not be in their best personal interests to do so. High sense of urgency cultures are made up of start-up people.
Start-up people can be in a big company, self employed, in an entrepreneurial firm or working for a not-for-profit company. They are people who can work well when multi-tasking; they are people who are willing to take calculated risks and not be afraid of people laughing at their ideas. Start-up people get the job done without being told. Start-up people may not have the highest GPA or come from the top top schools; it's not easy to find them. Start-up people are fun to work with, and they make a positive difference in the firms that employ them.
I now have a team of start-up people in all the jobs I have .. in academics and in business. These teams are doing a lot with few resources. To all the start-up people on my teams, thank you!
To firms that want to hire and retain start-up people, let's talk. There is a way to bring them to your firm, or even better, to find them as I guarantee there are some in the midst of your current employee population.