Here To Serve

Ben Gateley, CharlieHR’s CO-Founder & COO, on why you should be helping your team reach for the stars.

Understanding your team members makes a huge difference to your ability to work together. Great teams know the people they’re working with. I don’t mean what they order for lunch, I mean what their relationship with their parents is like, and what their dreams are.

Knowing the personal ambitions of those in your team is one of the most important tools for any leader. It’s a true and powerful motivator. It ensures you’re helping those around you to move in the direction they desire.

Founders like to think that their business is the centre of the universe. Yet ambitious team members are often looking beyond this, to their own futures. So in reality, we’re here to serve. We’re a stepping stone on to the next part of that journey. The sooner we realise it, the sooner we can crack on in making those dreams a reality. We’re building a business that serves a purpose to its customers, but here we’re also building a business that serves a purpose for those that join the team. Here’s why it matters…

Be True To Yourself

No one wants to wake up on a Monday morning with a resignation letter sitting in their inbox. We’ve found we can avoid this by having open and honest career conversations with those we work with. Sometimes we can even come to those conclusions together. Being open to hearing your team’s ambitions creates a culture where it’s okay to be realistic. To say, for example, that you don’t see yourself working in the same job for the next five years. This in turn opens up the possibility for everyone to be honest with themselves — and their team — about what they really want and what that next step should look like.

Ego Inspires

Ego can be a dangerous thing in a business, but it’s important to understand that we are all driven by personal wants and needs to varying degrees. People who are getting personal fulfilment out of their work are going to form a more successful team than those who aren’t. Great teams are made up of individuals doing the things they love, and the consequence is they do them well.

You Have To Swim

The dream is to be able to support many stages of a team member’s career journey. If there’s an intersection between where they’re heading and a role that you need filled, then more often than not you’ve struck gold. While they’ll lack experience and knowledge of the new role… deep water means you have to learn to swim. We’ve consistently found that young, hungry and ambitious teams outperform those with more experience. The unknown has a way of getting the absolute best out of people.


The success of your business often depends on unlocking the long term ambitions of your team, and vice versa. Teams that align on a single definition of success are far more effective. Your role is to align the two.

I’m also certain that, for me, there is a bigger reason why supporting your team to unlock their own personal ambitions is valuable:

While we might think we can do it all on our own, we can’t. Therefore, the simplest way to create maximum impact during your time on this planet is not to try and do it all yourself, but to inspire and enable those around you to make their own impact.

Together we can create real change…

CharlieHR is the HR software for small businesses. Building a company is hard, running one shouldn’t be. Find out more here.

Neo Sepulveda

Neo Sepulveda

Software engineer at CharlieHR 💻. I like climbing things quite a bit 🐒.

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