From the “A VC Blog” (my emphasis):
Companies are not people. But they are comprised of people. And the people side of the business is harder and way more complicated than building a product is. You have to start with culture, values, and a committment to creating a fantastic workplace. You can’t fake these things. They have to come from the top. They are not bullshit. They are everything. There will be things that happen in the course of building a business that will challenge the belief in the leadership and the future of the company. If everyone is a mercenary and there is no shared culture and values, the team will blow apart. But if there is a meaningful culture that the entire team buys into, the team will stick together, double down, and get through those challenging situations.
My experience tells me this is true of any outstanding organization, not just a start-up. I’ve been a member of some really good teams. I’ve put together a couple of them, too. It is the hardest work I’ve ever done but oh-so-worth-it, especially in social services and other customer service oriented operations. The satisfaction after a year or three is incomparable because both team and clients achieve, sometimes in the face of extreme skepticism.
Anyway, the passage has energized my morning so thought I’d share.