Understanding startups: Roles within a startup

A good and innovative team distinguishes itself in most successful start-ups through its cohesion. There is a balance between the individual roles, because in the end the startup and its success is the sum of the performance of its employees. If someone does not fit into the picture, he will not promote the success of the company, but endanger it. If he has no motivation for new challenges in a dynamic environment, he is not made for the start-up world.

The optimal start-up team is particularly striking because of the different skills, abilities and backgrounds of the employees and founders. They should complement and inspire each other. Teams in start-ups are often most creative when they come from very different areas and are sometimes in critical demand. However, things should always be constructive. If the character traits are too different, collisions can occur that have the exact opposite effect.

That’s why founders look for the following characters when building their business:


The genius

Every team needs a genius, not a self-appointed genius, but an expert in an important key field for the company. The genius is a driving force behind the company’s vision and the startup is literally taking off.

But such geniuses are often true divas at the same time. They know about their relevance for the team and play this knowledge off. But as difficult as they can sometimes be, they are always looking for new challenges to their skills and continue to drive the team and the company forward, but caution: some of the genius’ decisions can also be risky and ill-considered, as it was only driven to proof by his will.


The Superstar

Often the superstar and the genius are the same person. He keeps the company running, brings in new ideas and motivates the team with new challenges. At the same time, however, he is also a whole piece of work for colleagues and bosses, because he is not an easy personality.

The Industry Veteran
Even if startups are concerned with new, never-before-seen ideas, a team member with start-up experience can offer great advantages. Whether it is business angels, mentors or former startup employees; industry experience can only help a startup and its projects.

The startup industry is complex and fiercely contested, so you need someone who can move safely through the funding jungle and has learned from previous mistakes and challenges of a pioneering company.


The sales talent

As a founder you don’t have to be a born sales talent to realize your idea, but it can’t hurt to have such a sales genius in your team. With a good salesperson, investors and customers who jump on the startup’s vision can be found more quickly. This enables young companies to survive in a competitive market environment over the long term.


The financial genius

Founding a company isn’t just about selling. The finances must also be in balance. Startups therefore need an expert in financial topics to take care of the most difficult topic for many founders – money.

In addition to these special personalities, who are needed for a start-up, there must also be employees with special skills for the individual projects. A good innovation team in startups therefore always has a developer who takes care of its problem-solving skills, a designer who brings the creative spirit into a process and a marketer who knows how to reach the target group and optimally place ideas with customers and investors.


One thing can be noted about team building in a startup, the process of putting together a good and efficient team never ends. Once a startup has assembled its founding team of superstars, leaders and geniuses, it must fill its project teams with creative, professional and marketing talents. The hiring process should never be rushed. With the limited budget of a start-up, every step must be well thought out. But a team with the right company fit can make a difference.

Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinkerhttps://www.medialist.info
Alexander Pinker is an innovation profiler, future strategist and media expert who helps companies understand the opportunities behind technologies such as artificial intelligence for the next five to ten years. He is the founder of the consulting firm "Alexander Pinker - Innovation Profiling", the innovation marketing agency "innovate! communication" and the news platform "Medialist Innovation". He is also the author of three books and a lecturer at the Technical University of Würzburg-Schweinfurt.

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