For Startups, Hire Entrepreneurs

I've just discovered this video about interview with Jack Ma (CEO of

Jack Ma mentioned that for companies looking for entry into business in China, they should hire the right people. For startups, people with entrepreneurial spirits should be preferred over people with experiences; the so-called professionals.

This is in fact not just the advise for China, it is a good advice for business bosses all over the world, especially when current economy is capable of making old business models obsolete. Newer companies will emerge; startups with a grab of lower cost of ownership and etc will resurface, particularly in the USA region.

I am not sure about Malaysia which is all year summer, but based on my layman perspective, I would think that this economy gets to phase out the old and make way for the new.

According to Jack, professionals will be needed when companies become stable.

Previously, we heard from Adobe's that the top skills for next five years will be:
  1. Critical thinking
  2. IT architecture
  3. Teamwork
  4. Creativity

which are very much entrepreneurial in nature.

If we look at the scenario in Malaysia from this article about demands for skilled people. It shows that especially in the ICT sectors, there are not much new jobs.

It mentions that there are 3% increase in minimum and maximum salary for competency in C,C++, Java software development which suggests that there are just about 3% increase in human resource turnover in such areas. As we have predicted earlier on, the reason is very likely because jobs revolving around these skill sets are highly demanding in terms of expectation.

A sign to look for when large companies are expanding the software development team is in the increase of demand for skill sets of Microsoft technology. I have always believed that startups should rely more on open source while in-house teams should rely on Microsoft technology because the former are expected to excel in innovation while the latter to focus on operations.

People with entrepreneurial spirits are likely to leave the company to start their own company when the it comes stable while professionals tend to stay to the company to climb the corporate ladder.