Many companies base their employees' productivity off of factors such as work schedule, time spent at his or her desk, and hours on the timesheet. In 2014, these factors are fairly useless in judging the efficiency and productivity of a 21st century worker. Matt Mullenweg, founder of Automattic, employs diverse practices within his San Francisco-based enterprise, which includes focuses on employee output rather than appearances. Below are three tips from Mullenweg on how to run your start up efficiently.
Allow for experimentation. Automattic functions on a new age, open-source philosophy that embraces 225 employees in over 190 cities. Mullenweg has been told that this strategy will fail many times, but he remains confident in its ability. "It is this type of experimental attitude that gives you the ability to try new things."
Surround yourself with a great team. Automattic spends a great deal of time picking and choosing their employees. With a stress on finding the perfect fit in each employee, Automattic hires about 40% of applicants. All new hires partake in a rigorous trial process where they complete the tasks they normally would, for a flat rate set by Automattic. If the employee seems to mesh well with the company, then they are hired contractually and become full time employees. Finding the right people is one of Automattic's greatest strengths.
Measure output as opposed to appearance. "We think someone is a hard worker if they show up in the morning and they aren't drunk, they don't sleep at their desk, and they leave at the right time and they are dressed nicely," says Mullenweg. This is not the case. Focus on the output of the employee. If they are producing high quality work from their home in another country, is there really a need make them work out of the San Francisco office? Absolutely not. Today's standards and expectations of employees are radically different than the standards of yesterday. Embrace the new standards, and focus on the output of your employees.