Probably, they are not 4 rules which should always hang in front of you. But they are certainly four things you have to remember if you are involved in a startup.
First of all, affinity and trust should be built between all the sides playing roles in successful growing of the business. Neglecting serious attitude to companionship, people deny an opportunity to hear each other, be ready to communicate, discuss and clarify. Being human and having relations is the #1 goal while collaborating within startup.
Don’t let a single day pass by without discussion. Discuss with everyone. Discuss everything – talk through the desired outcomes, set expectations, ask for any comments, feedback or even slight updates. Always follow up your discussions and manage them. It’s better to overcommunicate than to pass up some details which can be probably important. And don’t forget that sometimes people are just introvert. If you want to make them open up, sometimes you need to pull first.
And let it be your rule: To be successful – startup should work as one mechanism. To be one mechanism – everybody should interact.
Clarity. The devil is in details. Working on one idea, all the parts can have their own vision of it. Often people speak too broadly and do not fall into details. As a result – assuming, false interpreting and misleading information. If you want to avoid serious issues because of misunderstanding – do not avoid the details. Don’t be afraid to ask too much, fix the answers, put them in written and discuss. For sure, to feel free to inquire, stages above should be done.
To make all run smooth, everybody should have his own responsibilities. And everything should have its own deadline. Raise a flag ON TIME! if someone doesn’t do things he is responsible for on time. Not failed duties make everything goes wrong, but ignoring them failed. Broken promises, undercut expectations or even not provided feedback, not filed in time-sheet or not paid invoice – are the reasons for discussion and, probably, escalating the question.