Do you have the Right Seats around the Table?
Are you frustrated with having responsibility for everything in your growing startup?
Even if you now have 10, 20 or maybe even 30 people in your company, you are
still the one where always, the buck has to stop.
Well, stop it already.
You have people in your leadership team. It’s time to make them accountable for
We’ve just revamped our accountability worksheets and they are called the “Accountability Roundtable.”
We split them up in four different steps.
Step 1: Do you have the right seats around the leadership table?
The problem is as follows, we typically have people that get whatever title when
they join your startup; basically a title of their choice. But what does that
function really mean?
We start by mapping the people, not against their own titles, but against their
In let’s say a series B stage software startup. You have product, you have
engineering, you have marketing, sales support, customer success, finance and
admin, employee success, and two different titles for the type of CEO that you
All we have to do right now is take the names of the people that are in the
current leadership team and put them with the function that matches best.
Step 2: Do you see certain seats that are empty?
Do you see certain seats that are empty? And why? Is that by choice, because you
just don’t do a certain activity? Or is it because you actually have a blind
spot in your team? First thing to solve.
Step 3: Which seats have multiple people?
If for example, you have suddenly three people in the box product, you probably
are experiencing a lot of conflict around the product prioritization in the
Step 4: Do you have certain people that have multiple seats?
Here’s a typical example: one founder is occupying three, four, five
if you are that founder, here’s what I want to say to you: “stop thinking of
people as your *assistant* for x and start thinking of them as the
*responsible* for x”.
In other words, you do not have a marketing assistant that just does many tasks
for you in the marketing field. No, you should have a head of marketing. And all
they need to do is produce leads for you with their own creativity and their own
initiatives, not yours.
Does that make sense?
That is what I mean with the right seats. It’s number one of our Accountability
In the next article, we will talk about “if they are also doing the right
things in those seats?”
If you want to know if you have the right seats around the table in your
startup, then there is a very easy tool that you can fill-out. This worksheet _
“Accountability Round Table #1: Right Seats”_ is available for download below.