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Successful Harvard Dropout Faces New Challenges

Cesar Carvalho was a Harvard dropout. He didn’t know that by the summer of 2012 he would be launching Gympass. Gympass now includes 38,000 fitness facilities across the globe.

Carvalho, the co-founder and CEO started building Gympass while a student at Harvard Business School.

He decided not too long after attending Harvard to drop out so he could pursue his new business full-time.

This corporate fitness program allows company employees to have access to gyms in different locations at a discounted rate. Companies like Uber, Deltoitte, and Paypal are clients.

Though Gympass is now very successful, as a Harvard dropout, Carvalho faced many challenges.

His visions were not big enough and his hiring practices not steep enough. Currently, Gympass employs 800 people around the world. Initially, he hired anybody that was interested in doing the job for that day, instead of looking for people who would help propel the business into the future.

“The hiring decisions that we made in the beginning were not optimal. We had to continuously bring more senior people to the company. And what I learned from it is that being able to plan for the next two to three years helps a lot on that,” Carvalho said.

Now, Gympass looks for people who want a future with the company not just today but 2-3 years from now.

Investing in getting talented people to work for you is something you likely will not regret. Picking the right team is crucial and if there is a weak link, then someone may need to be replaced. Without the right people, your company could be sunk even before it gets off the ground.

[Tweet “At first it might be difficult to attract that right person – not everyone wants to join a startup says Harvard dropout Carvalho of Gympass” ]

“It’s actually super challenging to make the decision to hire someone for what the company needs three years from now. At the point in time that you’re making the decision, you might not have the bank you need to support that person,” Carvalho said.

Sure, a startup is risky for both employer and new employee.

Who can know if this person will still be a fit in a couple years and who knows where the new company will be down the road?

Carvalho blames some of the company’s problems on his faulty hiring technique early on, and believes that if he would have had better hiring practices, the company would be in a much better state.

You know the old saying, “You get what you pay for. Don’t be scared to invest in your team. It could make all the difference in the world”, Harvard dropout, Cesar Carvalho.

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