Understanding your employee's perspective can go a long way towards increasing productivity and happiness.— Kathryn Minshew
The most captivate Kathryn Minshew quotes that are little-known but priceless
Starting a business isn't for everyone, and it's not what you should do if you aren't sure what else to do. It requires thick skin and the willingness to carry a great deal of stress, sometimes alone. It's more often a life of failure than a life of success, and the majority of successes came after a long road of disappointment, and often shame.
For almost the first year of The Muse's life, I would do 5 to 8 networking events a week. And I don't necessarily think that's the right path for everyone, but I realized that as an entrepreneur, one of my strengths was finding the right people who could help us. I didn't come into startups with any network.
Most weeks, I work 100-plus hours on TheMuse.
com. There are definitions of 'work-life balance' that would say I have none.
Get your product in front of actual, living, breathing strangers.
Your college roommate's approval does not mean there's market demand.
Have a go-to pump up song. Mine is Shakira's 'Waka Waka' from the 2010 World Cup (don't judge). Play it only when you're ready to turn into your most badass self.
Keeping a 'CEO blog' or 'founder's blog' can be a great platform for engaging your users in a nontraditional way, reaching people outside of your product pitch and building rapport without selling them anything except a belief in your ideas.
Launching a start-up, you need to get a lot done quickly.
Every day is different. Everyone pitches in with everything. It's easy for the founding team to say, 'We're flexible. We all help out with everything!' But when it comes to making decisions - that flexibility can spell inefficiency and disaster.
So many of my rookie mistakes could have been avoided by first-hand exposure to other, more experienced technology entrepreneurs.
Done right, a performance review is one of the best opportunities to encourage and support high performers and constructively improve your middle- and lower-tier workers.
My first company failed completely. And it failed at about ten months old. I had about 12 months of savings, so when it failed I was thinking: 'Do I go back to work?' And at that point I believed so deeply in what I was doing that I couldn't imagine anything else other than trying to make this business work.
The best cover letters I've read are from people who have a passion for my company, and can make that passion come to life on a page. The letters that make me say, 'Yes! This person really gets it.' Because, at the end of the day, I want to hire people who already get it. Most hiring managers do.
When you start a new company, you have to do it all. Yes, all of it.
We knew when we started the Daily Muse, we wanted a recruiting-focused business model rather than an advertising-focused one. We felt like publishers were being forced to go to more and more extreme lengths to monetize through advertising.
Call it nature or nurture, there are differences in how men and women approach professional conduct, and facing these issues head-on will make us all more equipped to succeed.
Sure, you're an intelligent and highly capable individual, and you are learning a lot on the fly as you build your company. But you also need to come to terms with the fact that there are things you have chosen not to be an expert in.
One of the top causes of startup death - right after cofounder problems - is building something no one wants.
What do I want to do with my life?
You know, as most entrepreneurs do, that a company is only as good as its people. The hard part is actually building the team that will embody your company culture and propel you forward.
Thinking big is only one part of being a successful entrepreneur.
As we've grown 'The Daily Muse' and met contacts who want to collaborate with us, knowing who does what has helped us be clear on who we want our partners to connect with - and makes us look buttoned up, too. SEO firm? Talk to our COO. An editor from the 'Huffington Post?' Meet our Editor-in-Chief.
Sure, it's fun to chat with people with interesting backgrounds who seem to have a passion for your company. But a job interview is not a friendly chat. You need to determine whether candidates, can they really do the job. So ask them to prove it.
I've learned I'm rarely able to stay at home and not work.
If I try to 'just sit on my couch for a little while,' I am going to grab my laptop and just knock out a few more emails, or start sketching up some product ideas for TheMuse.com. So when I want time off, I schedule dinners out, movie outings, and on occasion a flight lesson from Groupon.
It's fantastic to be known as a company that responds quickly to users, shares great resources and friendly banter with them over Twitter, and forges relationships on Pinterest, Facebook, and every other social media site out there.
If you're able to arrange a trial period with a new hire, do it.
It will give both of you a chance to make sure the position is a good fit - and can help you avoid being in the awkward situation of wanting to fire someone three or four weeks in.
Much-derided chick lit, chick flicks, and chick magazines have left ambitious women in a bind. Why is it that I, a young woman, can read GQ, enjoy Fight Club, and subscribe to Thrillist, while the idea of a guy doing the same with Glamour, 27 Dresses and Daily Candy is nearly unheard of?
I am a big advocate for having an open discussion about team norms and preferences. At The Muse, some of us like to start working at 7:30 A.M. Others focus best from 10 P.M. to 2 A.M. Create a culture where it's acceptable not to be working when someone else is working.
For those working menial jobs or putting in 100-hour weeks for corporations, the lure of starting your own business can seem like a great way to get more flexibility, upside, and ownership.