How much HR does a scale-up need?

Nora Jenkins Townson Contributor Share on Twitter Nora is an unconventional HR expert based in Toronto. After helping successful startups like FreshBooks and Wealthsimple grow, she founded Bright + Early, an HR consultancy focused on helping scaling companies build impactful people programs.

There is a special chaos that happens when a startup reaches 30 employees. People have a harder time tracking what’s going on, and it’s easy for some to feel left out or ignored.

Right when you want employees focusing on taking the company to the next level, they’re suddenly focused on their own futures. Insecurities and politics can abound, and the work can suffer.

How to stop the madness? In my experience, it all comes down to structure. It might seem early, or scary to a company used to succeeding on grit, but 30 is a key time to begin putting processes into place.

You’re no longer 10 people sitting around a table together, and communication can start to break down. Looking to large companies is no help either. It’s easy to get lost in a sea of frameworks, and you don’t want to overwhelm your team.

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