I run a startup with team members much younger, more agile, and nimble than I am. They are a powerhouse of ideas, enthusiasm, and buzzing with energy all the time. We call them Mintys!
Our Mintys truly represent the spirit of our startup. They are empowered, they are heard and they get due recognition. This also leads to energies flowing in different directions. New product ideas, new service streams, new partnership opportunities which we thoroughly encourage.
Sounds good! Add to this the typical problems of bootstrapped startups like limited budgets, cash flow, hiring plans, order books visibility, unplanned expenses etc. There are way too many moving parts, all happening at the same time.
In the early days of a startup, it is absolutely important not to let day-to-day operations take precedence over what is more important. The art of doing this could be either chaos or “managed chaos”. I see “Chaos” as “Kiosk” of new idea hubs. Structuring these kiosks is more important than muting them over seemingly urgent but less important operations. In bigger setups, these kiosks are called incubation units. As a leader of a startup, embrace these nano incubators and put the right ones in pursuit.
It is supremely important for the leader of the pack to embrace this chaos. It’s like being an elder one to the herd of elephants, standing behind the calves and showing them the way forward. You need to be the convergent point that leads multiple ideas towards one goal, the company would stand for.
For example, we successfully built our own headless e-commerce platform for B2B coming out of one of our "Kiosk". It started with articulating and reiterating problem statements till it graduated into a product idea (far from production). This is only a start point in our quest for defining our space.
It is important to create the vision and allow your teams a free play to support them to the finish line. Make way....