I recently heard an interesting way to measure leadership goodness. Good leaders are able to attract former colleagues to become part of their future companies.
They do not burn bridges. They inspire. They motivate excellence. And former colleagues remember those feelings.
In startups, there are often times when co-founders or early employees depart the company for situational reasons: the company needed to trim down, the product focus shifted and the person’s skills were no longer aligned, the person needed a BigCo-level salary for whatever personal reason, the person needed a break from the startup stress, etc. These are all natural reasons and I have seen all of those in the history of AccelerEyes.
There is a great alumni group of former AccelerEyes team members. They are awesome. We are trying to attract several of them to rejoin our ranks. Some have returned already. I think they remember the great period of growth and opportunity to be had on our team.
That does not mean some departures won’t be rocky. Sometimes you have to be firm and unyielding.
What are your thoughts on attracting former colleagues as a measure of leadership?