14 Tips for Running Employee Trial Periods

  • February 24, 2014

Bring new people in on a contingent basis for myriad reasons, the most important being your cost-to-benefit ratio. Give a potential hire a specific deliverable and problem to work on, and have him do so in your office or around your team. Make hiring a team effort, and make sure that no one gets hired…


9 Tips For Managing Your Remote Staff

  • December 18, 2013

Make sure your contractors know they should be coming to you if they have questions, and make yourself available to answer them. The worst thing is to have them floundering and not moving your project forward. Setting deadlines is also a must, otherwise your project might take the back burner for other more…


A Better Way To Support And Train Your Staff

  • November 25, 2013

Often, when job performance is falling short of expectations, managers resort to mandatory training sessions for their employees. Either workers are sent offsite for instruction, or trainers are brought in to provide new training. Yet, when it comes to underperformance, is holding training sessions…


Your Employees Are Not Like You

  • November 25, 2013

I recently heard behavioral analyst Steve Sisler speak at an event for the Colorado Chapter of Entrepreneur’s Organization. Prior to the event, he asked us all to take two tests: a personality assessment tool that measures dominance, influence, steadiness and conscientiousness (or DISC profile) and the


3 Best Practices For Startup Hiring

  • November 12, 2013

It’s really hard to teach someone how to hire, how to manage, and how to lead. Like many things, it’s usually best to learn on the job, practice, and improve after making a lot of mistakes along the way. The problem is, as a startup, you can’t afford to make a lot of mistakes when hiring. You also can’t…


4 Secrets Of Creating Great Company Culture

  • November 8, 2013

The word “organization” and the word “organism” come from the same root word. Company culture bears many similarities to natural ecosystems. The way founders do business in the beginning of a startup are the seeds for what kind of company they will develop in two, five and ten years. Whether you know…


Re-Thinking Project Management To Drive Results

  • October 31, 2013

Consultants and management experts have come up with various metaphors and models to talk about the productivity plateau – that strange period after a company has achieved initial success and begins to see its productivity stagnate. For the company’s leadership, this period is as confusing as it is panic…


Beware Of These Common HR Problems

  • October 29, 2013

The mere mention of human resources can elicit some pretty negative reactions. Despite being the people with some of the cooler degrees, HR reps get a pretty bad rap. Maybe people associate it with getting fired, or maybe the idea of all that paper work is what drove people to start their own company…


13 Web Tools That Will Improve Your HR Department

  • October 24, 2013

Freckle is a great online tool to track employee hours. Your team can log in from anywhere, so if they want to put in a few hours work from Topeka during a layover or log some time while at the beach, it’s just a click away. It allows the project manager to keep an eye on how many hours people are spending on…


Salary Or Hourly: How Should You Pay Your Startup Employees?

  • October 3, 2013

The decision of whether to pay your startup employees on a salary or hourly basis depends a lot on the type of business you have and the commodity you are selling. You don’t want to go into debt over your payroll, so before you pay anyone a salary, including yourself, it’s advisable to have a backlog of work…


Save Your Bacon. Let The Whitetruffle Pig Find The Perfect Job

  • September 30, 2013

Some people think of jewelry when they think of gold. I think of food, as in white truffles, those rare aromatic delicacies that must be discovered using special dogs or pigs. If you’re a business owner, you might think of the perfect employee when you think of gold. Or white truffle. What do I mean by…


12 Turnoffs When Hiring Virtual Employees

  • September 24, 2013

Being able to communicate effectively is key to projecting your image as a brand. Candidates must have strong written and verbal communication skills in order to properly represent your brand. Poor English, grammar, or simply careless spelling mistakes are a major turnoff. And due to our fast-paced society…


11 Ways To Measure Employee Morale

  • September 16, 2013

If one of my team members is either pouring everything she’s got into a side project or she doesn’t have one at all, I consider that a warning sign for bad morale. I go through my team’s side projects on a regular basis and, as long as there seems to be balance between what they’re doing for me and what…


Startup Recruiting: 3 Lessons Over 4 Years

  • August 21, 2013

These are lessons learned (sometimes the hard way) over the past four years while helping grow SponsorPay into one of the top 100 private digital media companies globally. As such, they’re my/our catalog of experiences rather than a rigorous analysis of a large dataset. Much has been said about the adage…


6 Pros And Cons Of Hiring Remote Workers

  • August 16, 2013

Log on to a site like and you’ll quickly see profiles for the tens of thousands of workers based around the globe, ready to hire out their services for as little as $.50/hour. A few easy mental calculations reveal that this hourly rate works out to just $20/week and $1,020/year for a full-time…


11 Methods For Dealing With Problem Employees

  • July 17, 2013

When you need to deal with a problem employee, be prepared to reference the original description for that position or project, and frame the talk around actions. ‘You need to stop doing this, and start doing this,’ is easier to communicate than blame or lectures. ‘You’re screwing this up’ or ‘Why can’t you…


How To Avoid Hiring The Wrong Person For Your Startup

  • July 4, 2013

“He sounded so capable in the interview!” “I just don’t know what happened. It seemed like she had exactly the right experience we were looking for!” “The whole team loved him, so we just went with it.” Perhaps you’ve uttered these words yourself, or heard them from a hiring manager who is experiencing…


Don’t Let A Tech Bottleneck Kill Your Startup

  • May 23, 2013

During the recession, everyone was fretting over jobs, and it revealed an interesting conundrum in the US job market, namely that there are plenty of jobs, just not enough skilled people to fill them, especially in the technology sector. This critical shortage has lead to heavy demand for key skills…


8 Traits Top Employees Share

  • May 22, 2013

Companies of all shapes and sizes are now facing higher levels of uncertainty and considerably fewer resources to spend on even top-priority initiatives. The result has been a growing significance of a certain type of employee: dynamic, consistently effective, endlessly useful, and enjoyable to work with…