As a Hong Kong startup entrepreneur, one of your most important jobs is to create a place where your team can work, without intervention from any unnecessary disruption. It is never only about registering a company in Hong Kong and then just let it run by your team. It may be easy for some to filter out all the interruption. But it may not be so straightforward when you actually try to enforce it or implement it in your workplace.
The Bad Characteristics: Politics
Politics is the word. Ideally no politics should be allowed in the early stage of a startup. The founders should always give credit where a certain credit is due. He should be genuine about it at this stage. Limiting the politics is the upmost important tasks of any startup at this phase.
Mission or Job?
It is a job in a company. But it may be not. It is rather a mission. When it is a mission, your team won’t simply jump ship to work for your direct competitors simply because they are willing to pay your team more. Geographically, Hong Kong is a small place. A typical labor who moves from one job to another job may simply be moving from Admiralty to Central. On paper the person has moved from one area to another area. But that is like a few blocks of buildings away. When you (the founder) who are able to set up your company to foster a culture of a strong mission, it will automatically do its best to keep your existing team members, and even attract new members to add to your existing mission-driven employees. At the end of the day, you are sitting with a group of great employees who share the same dream with you.
Tolerance and Mistakes
You must be able to calm down most of the time, and be tolerate for people’s mediocrity – That is what mostly happening to most of us in Hong Kong and in the world. Everyone pulls their weight well at certain levels, but it is hard to avoid making mistakes. Especially at most startups where lots of autonomy is given out to team members for them to move the projects forward quickly, there are so many potential traps for making mistakes. Let your team make mistakes. This way, they will be able to learn and grow in their jobs both as a professional worker and as a person in life.
While tolerance is allowed, at the same time the founders and/or leaders must make sure that they are treating company/business assets wisely and thoughtfully. In the beginning of a startup, assets are always hard to get and are limited.
Having mutual respect between founders and co-founders, and the team is important. Hierarchy may exist and work. But all team members and the management must learn and know how to respect others even everyone may contribute to the success of the business in different ways.