Subscribe to Entrepreneur for $5
Subscribe

Hire Team Members Who Are 'Willing to Turn Your Dreams Into a Reality'

By

Like many successful young entrepreneurs, Merlin Kauffman constantly talks up his startup with friends, colleagues and, of course, potential customers. But passion -- and a gift for passionately pitching -- cannot alone sustain a business.

To run his company, a West Hollywood, Calif.-based in-home massage delivery service called Soothe, the Harvard Business School Owner/President Management program graduate onboarded a talented, tight-knit technical team. Their marching orders: to code the backend of Kauffman’s entrepreneurial dreams, the inner workings of Soothe.

“If you’re an idea person,” he tells Entrepreneur, “you really need to find a very strong technical person who’s willing to turn your dreams into a reality and not fight you on that too much.”

Related: 20 Entrepreneurs on the Lessons Their Mothers Taught Them

And by not fighting, he says he means following the leader and sticking to his original vision. It’s a delicate balancing act that Kauffman, who tells us he was hired by AOL at the age of 11 and bootstrapped his first startup at the age of 17, carefully treads. At Soothe, he makes his working style philosphies clear to his engineers and other employees from the very beginning, as early as during the hiring process.

“You need people who are cooperative and who can add onto your idea, and won’t detract from it,” he says.

Judging by the rapid expansion of Soothe -- launched in August 2013 and now available in some 25 cities throughout the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom -- it appears Kauffman’s team did just that. Closing several venture capital rounds totaling some $47.3 million hasn’t hurt either.

To hear more of Kauffman’s advice on hiring the right talent for your business, check out the video clip above.

Latest

Top 3 Little-Known Productivity Mistakes

Are you struggling to stay on task? Well these three little-known mistakes might be tanking your productivity without you even knowing.

How One Startup Is Trying to Revolutionize the Low-Code/No-Code Industry

The CEO and co-founder of Zenity shares how his company is dedicated to governance and security for low-code/no-code applications.

4 Things to Do When You're in a Negotiation

The executive director and CEO of WIN Summit shares her advice for entrepreneurs looking to elevate their negotiation skills.

Matt Horn on Finding Purpose in Family and Flames

In-depth interview with CEO, pitmaster, and James Beard Award Nominee Matt Horn about growing his global food brand with social media, operating multiple restaurant concepts, and why he decided to "burn the boats."

This Entrepreneur Believes the 9-to-5 Work Week Is Dead. So She Created a Platform That Matches Talent With Project-Based Work.

The founder of NuuWork shares how her company will help people navigate the future of project-based employment.

How This Company Is Helping Ecommerce Brands Scale and Grow

The co-founder of 8fig shares how his platform is helping online sellers plan and execute their growth around their supply-chain needs.

Eitan Bernath on Becoming a Teenage Food Entrepreneur and Social Media Star

In-depth interview with cookbook author, food personality, and content creator Eitan Bernath about starting an entertainment career as a child, teaming up with Drew Barrymore, and building an inspirational business empire before his 20th birthday.

Ask Marc: Netflix Co-Founder Marc Randolph on Facing Challenges, Bringing on Co-Founders and Growth

In this episode of our new series 'Ask Marc,' the serial entrepreneur and mentor offers advice on how to get started.

3 Science-Backed Ways to Break Bad Habits

Become powerfully productive with these three patterns.

Meet the Co-Founders Making Conscious Shopping Easier

Goodbuy's Cara Oppenheimer and Cary Telander Fortin share how their browser extension helps consumers buy products with both their wallets and values front of mind.

Nina Manchev of Forte Tapas on Engaging Customers with Social Video

Interview with Forte Tapas owner and entrepreneur Nina Manchev about connecting with social media, learning to be confident on video, and appearing on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives.

This CEO Believes We Need More Women In Crypto

Jaime Leverton, head of NASDAQ-listed Hut 8 Mining Corp., talks the future of digital currency with 'Entrepreneur.'

How to Create Your Path to Profit

Financial expert and author Michelle Jacobik is on a mission to help people be profitable, so she created the EnVision + Thrive Academy. She shares her journey to success, business tips and what you'll learn in her new book.

Toast CEO Chris Comparato on Why Restaurants Need a Tech Partner That Cares

Interview with Toast CEO Chris Comparato about leading with the customer in mind, having a digital-first mentality, and how technology like Toast is helping restaurants thrive.

The Science of Visualization: Maximizing Your Brain's Potential

In this video, we discuss why visualization is so effective and offer four tips to harness it.

Discover Entrepreneur Series

Whether you need advice on how to get your business off the ground or you’re just looking for inspiration, our video series have something for everyone. Browse our library below to find a series that speaks to you and your interests.

  • An original series streaming weekly where you can Click-to-Invest while you watch. THEIR JOURNEY. Your decision.
  • Your favorite pitch show is back with new entrepreneurs pitching Entrepreneur's investors.
  • Host Nicole Walters interviews small business founders to discuss their unique challenges and experiences running and growing a business. 
  • How many times have you been told “that will never work”? Probably not as often as Netflix co-founder Marc Randolph. The veteran Silicon Valley entrepreneur provides a healthy dose of humor, and actionable advice that will benefit founders - and would-be founders - at every stage of their business journey.
  • Jessica Abo covers the causes people care about, the powerful work they do and how they got to where they are in the first place.
  • Bestselling author, Ben Angel, takes his audience on a journey into the entrepreneurial mind to uncover why we do what we do through his powerful short films and educational videos so you can unleash your ideas and potential.