Launching a Social Enterprise: Recruitment

I’m listening to the Hamilton soundtrack to keep me going this afternoon. Musical soundtrack and a glass of wine – what else do I need?

Oh yes, I need to write this post before the England match starts!

So last time I checked in, I had set up our domain and set up a welcome page. It felt good to get things started. Of course, we started months ago but paying for and hosting a domain, and having a website which I can send to people, feels so much more real.

Well, it did until we had our latest meeting with our business mentor on Thursday. And she suggested we take the next big jump. We register the company. On Monday! That sounded terrifying, I’m not going to lie. Kind of like how I felt buying my first ever domain. But the difference between buying a domain and registering a business is, well, a lot.

There’s paperwork.

There’s accounts.

There’s legal implications.

But it’s a good kind of fear, an excited kind of fear. I’ve followed so many entrepreneurs on social media, and I’m not going to lie, they are all so confident. Their businesses reflect their businesses. Even the company I currently work for has one of the co-founders actively participating in the day to day running of the business after 15 years.

They all have qualities I admire, and I’m setting a high standard for myself as a co-founder.

Which brings me on to the next part of my week, recruitment. Of course, right now we haven’t launched and therefore I have no money to offer salaries. And I’m a strong advocate of not giving your services away for free so it feels quite hypocritical. Which was amusing when one of my friends offered to help with the business and marketing side of things. Which was perfect as the three co-founders are all software engineers so we were quite limited. I confirmed she wasn’t actually joking, and that she hadn’t offered just to be nice and supportive. And she said yes, she wanted to help, and she wanted equity.

All my years of watching Dragon’s Den and I hadn’t even thought about this.

Dragon’s Den source: BBC

We negotiated and came to a figure which we both agreed on – which will be confirmed and set up once she has spent a trial period with the team and see how she likes everything.

Now I felt more confident to reach out to other friends who I thought might be interested. Another friend agreed, and actually she said that she wanted to join us for the exact same reasons that had triggered me to start the company.

  • Encourage other women to get into tech
  • That we don’t see enough women in upper roles of tech
  • Actively encourage those diversity and inclusion conversations started in the workplace

She didn’t immediately ask for anything in return, but I made the same offer which I had negotiated with my previous friend. Again, she is going to go through a trial period to see how the work will fit around her full time job and how she likes everyone – but this is such a positive start.

Even though I have actually done this behind my other co-founders backs. Kind of. Part of me feels there should have been some sort of interview process, but with the trial periods it will give us all the opportunity to see how we fit together. However, we all share the same passion and I suspect we will all have a great journey ahead of us.

It’s Saturday now, with our bi-weekly meeting tomorrow. This will be a big one as we’ll discuss share options.

Then Monday it’s time to get the paperwork sorted and the registration started!

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