Why cutting-edge technology needs new start-up teams

30.1.2019

In German executive floors and company-builder programs, there is a basic consensus for successful founding:the team and the founder personalities have a significant impact. But that's where the consensus ends. Frequently, start-up teams are simply put together according to performance and competence criteria and start according to common standard processes. This is not enough for the founding tasks of the future and is far too narrow-minded, especially in the high-tech sector.

© Fraunhofer Venture

© Fraunhofer Venture

Status Quo: The wasted potential of founding teams

For hightech start-ups, very different skills, areas of expertise, working cultures and personalities have to be brought together. All too often, this is only done on the basis of specialist skills. In the best case, a new team develops a common working culture, a "team spirit" and a lived mission for common goals in a longer learning process. In the worst case, a common work plan, milestones and benchmarks are simply put over the heterogeneous structure of a team and a more or less common race for performance goals begins.

The diversity of the members - actually a source of strength and inspiration for the joint work - can easily become a brake block here, because differences lead to conflicts, and conflicts do not lead to solutions, but to blockades or disturbing noises in the joint developments. Today team development is often still a simple coincidence, because team buiding stops where it should start. 

High Impact: Faster, better and more innovative in a team 

The more complex the task and the more diverse the team members, the more important is the dimension of team psychology, mutual motivation and individual coaching. It can turn a diverse team into an energy center for idea development and iteration, for intuitive processes, for highly efficient results and for groundbreaking high-tech developments. At Fraunhofer Venture, we have therefore made team-building methods a central pillar of every start-up process: We put together high-impact teams in the very first day of our joint work, pick up each individual team member where he or she stands personally and accompany him or her with continuous coaching for every challenge of the start-up, individually or as part of a team.

Here High Impact means that teams integrate the variety of competencies and characters without rightly truncating the personalities and develop a powerful, positive momentum from discussions and controversies, which we accompany iteratively.

In our start-ups, for example, we observe a lot of sometimes controversial discussions at the beginning, because scientists, experts for artificial intelligence, developers, marketing experts and entrepreneurs do not "only" need clarification, but also have to develop discussion cultures, in which each personality brings in its own competence and opinion and gets time, space and opportunity to develop its own role in an agile team. And this is a good thing for us: The better a team finds itself from the start, the more successful it works together. The more "normal" differences, different thinking and controversies in the matter become, the more they can challenge a team and release energy. We work just as intensively on this as on technologies, prototypes or market entries.

Personal High Impact: Your entry into a founding team at Fraunhofer Venture

High Impact teams are able to quickly develop even complex technologies into marketable products and services because they form a community of motivated service providers from diverse personalities and competencies. Fraunhofer Venture is looking for these personalities and, in addition to a unique company building approach for entrepreneurs, scientists and experts, offers real high impact in a team and for personal career planning in your own company:

  • Effective teamwork with professional coaching: High Impact for start-up teams
  • CEO as a job opportunity: We are looking for Serial Entrepreneurs who can drive hightech ideas to prototypes and products to market maturity in a team
  • Hightech à la carte: access and start-up opportunities to the technologies that will shape the future of our economy and society
  • Probably the highest density of potential CTOs and tech evangelists in Europe
  • Speed to go live: High Impact Coaching is an accelerator for joint development and makes teams faster, more efficient and more successful