Nir Polak, CEO and co-founder of Exabeam
By Nir Polak
April 16, 2015

The Leadership Insider network is an online community where the most thoughtful and influential people in business contribute answers to timely questions about careers and leadership. Today’s answer to the question “What advice would you give someone looking to start their own business?” is by Nir Polak, CEO and co-founder of Exabeam.

If you’re looking to start your own business you need to be great at getting others to quit their job and join your startup. This may sound harsh, but it’s true. The ability to build a passionate, resourceful, and committed team is paramount to the success of your new company. It’s the first step in fulfilling your vision, which is why it’s so important. For me, I look for “sachkan neshama”– the Hebrew term for “soul players,” or how I describe people who are passionate about the work they do. Convincing people to leave stable jobs for something uncertain is never easy. Here are a few tips that may help:

Sell the dream
No one can convey the driving reason for a startup’s existence like its founder. If you want someone in a comfortable position to leave for the chance to help grow a new company, you have to effectively communicate your company’s market opportunity, unique strengths, and financial prospects.

Focus on recruiting
Your early employees and board members have already bought into your vision. So when they are working to recruit other exceptional candidates, encourage them to share why they joined your company and how rewarding it is to work for an organization that is constantly innovating.

Lay out the potential for success
Working for a startup is like entering a marriage. Employees will spend a lot of time with each other as they work together to bring a specific product to market, so the decision to come on board has to be about more than money. However, financial considerations matter when you’re asking an accomplished expert to leave an established company for a startup. For that reason, demonstrating the potential for future success is critical.

Show off the company culture
Most of the people who have joined Exabeam have not done so for the promise of market disruption alone. They joined because they have seen a mix of what we can offer in terms of business and culture. For instance, we like to invite potential candidates in for our weekly happy hours. This allows them to meet the team and experience the company culture firsthand.

Read all answers to the Leadership Insider question: What advice would you give someone looking to start their own business?

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