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Entrepreneurs, when I use the acronym MVP here, I am not referring to your Minimum Viable Product, I’m referring to your Most Valuable Player. Every company has a seriously exceptional team member (at least I hope so). This person can be distinguished by several stand-out attributes, some of which are as follows:
1. Your MVP is deeply and truly (emotionally) invested in the company.
By this, I mean an emotional allegiance with a solid foundation of loyalty, not a financial investment. This person stays with you and your company despite the fact that better opportunities with more money and resources are presented. Your MVP could easily take the job with less hours and more cash, but they don’t- because they want to see your enterprise on the up and up, and MVPs know that his or her presence is needed to make that happen.
2. Your MVP is willing to suffer injustices and still hangs in there.
Let’s be honest, no working environment is perfect and while I don’t condone it whatsoever, things in startups sometimes get excessively tense and even volatile. Your MVP might freak out, but they weather the storm and stand by you and your company, despite having been treated poorly in the past.
3. Your MVP is not afraid to tell it like it is, even if it will cost them their job.
Honesty and bravery are two things that money cannot buy. Entrepreneurs, you must surround yourself with people who are determined and honor-bound to tell you the (ugly) truth. When you are in a position of success and power, there is always the risk that those around you can become sycophantic and perhaps even self-serving in that sycophancy. This sounds Game of Thrones-y, and maybe it is, but it might be the very thing that saves you and your company (each and every time).
If you, as a business owner, don’t have an MVP, then there’s no time like the present to remedy that void since the greatest companies are built by the greatest people. If you already have your MVP, make it your absolute first priority to ensure that they are treated with the respect, and that you genuinely protect and preserve that deep commitment by returning devotion in kind. Quid pro quo.
P.S. As an aside, in our case, I’m fortunate in the regard that every team member of Entrepreneur Middle East is truly exceptional and they are all willing to go above and beyond the call of duty. To be honest, if they weren’t, they wouldn’t be part of my team. I only choose exceptional people, and I’d rather be short staffed (which we severely are), than hire a whole bunch of people who see our company as just another place to collect a pay check. Thank you to my team for your tireless contributions- I hope I can continue to do your work justice.