On January 12, the Launch NJ Women Entrepreneurs Group held its inaugural event for 2016, with a panel discussion on “Creating Your Dream Team to Support Your Business Growth” at the County College of Morris in Morristown.
A panel of successful women entrepreneurs talked about how to find and develop a team to support your business. Whom do you need? Where do you go to find these people? How do you get them on board?
The panelists included Rachel Anevski, founder and CEO of Matters of Management (Wayne); Joan Pelzer president and CEO of Joan Pelzer Media (New York, NY); and Peggy McHale, cofounder of Consultants 2 Go (Newark).
Some important takeaway points:
- Early on, before you start to bring on staff, have an advisory board.
- Learn best practices wherever you find them.
- A partnership is as intimate a relationship as a marriage, so get to know your potential partner(s) well before you close the deal. You will have to trust them with many details about your personal and professional life.
- Partners should have shared values but different skills.
- When growing your business, the usual sequence is to first do it all yourself, then bring in somebody for the financial/accounting aspect; next, as you grow, bring in somebody for business development; then bring in people for IT, human resources and office management.
- Flexible working arrangements attract talent from a great pool of professionals who need or want such arrangements.
- At the beginning, consider bartering services with other professionals.
- Let your team make mistakes.
After the panel discussion, the capacity crowd broke into three smaller discussion groups, led by the panelists, where they received person-to-person advice.