Five principles of building a strong team, — Vasyl Khmelnytsky

Vasyl Khmelnytsky, UFuture

Working alone, even 24/7, you will not earn much money — you need to have a strong team. In his speech at the Big Money Forum, the founder of the UFuture holding company Vasyl Khmelnytsky shared five principles of building a successful team, gained from his own experience.

Never hire friends and relatives

Friendship is an equal relationship. We argue with friends, quarrel, then reconcile and make friends again. This doesn’t happen at work: you are the head of the company, this’s your business, and you need an effective manager. You need to be able to set a tough task and be confident that it will be accomplished. Friends may not understand this, because they know you in other circumstances.

“In general, don’t invite people to the team who you’ll not be able to dismiss quickly or with whom you’ll be embarrassed to part. Moreover, if you hire a friend or relative, what position will you appoint? Won't you make him a janitor or a driver?”

So if you have friends, that’s cool. Let them do their business and you do yours.

Don’t invite people to the team who don’t currently work anywhere

I often hear stories that a person “took a vacation, decided to rest, but in general achieved great results at his former job.” I don’t hire such people.

“I need those who work in other companies, those who are constantly making decisions and moving forward. It's not easy to invite such people to your team, but you need them.”

The world is changing fast. And you need those who keep up with the times. Do n’t take people who are not currently employed.


“I’m often asked how to motivate people intangibly? I will say this: if a person earns less than $3,000, it’s impossible to motivate him immaterially.”

It’s good when you have the opportunity to train employees, organize joint trips, give bonuses, health insurance, etc. But if a person gets less than $ 3,000, he will still think about money. So, motivate with money.

Moreover, if such a person is constantly growing, moving forward, benefiting, give him a share of the profits. Even if you want to earn $1 million, give 10%. You will earn 900 thousand, and he — $100 thousand. And if you have five such areas, you will earn $4.5 million. Don’t count other people’s money. Part of the profits can be very effective in motivating people.

Finally, I allow the earned bonus to be invested with me in the next business. Then a person is so motivated that for him it is no longer just a job — it’s his company. Such a person comes to work earlier, later leaves it, and thinks like an owner. And it’s very cool.

Delegate authority

Very often I notice that the owner thinks that he works best of all, that no one will do better than him, etc. This approach doesn’t work.

Give your people authority. Let them make their own decisions. Last week, we selected a new contractor for the UNIT.City innovation park for $10 million, and the top manager in this area asked me: “Vasyl Ivanovych, are there three contractors to choose from?”. I say, “I don’t know, choose for yourself.”

My task is to make sure that only the coolest companies are on this list, that’s all. If only good companies are on the list, I don’t care which one my top manager chooses.

“Give your managers the opportunity to make their own decisions. If you gather strong people and work for them, sooner or later they will leave you.”


It’s very easy to gather inefficient, empty people. And to gather the strength and make them work in a team, to create conditions for them — we need talent, we need leadership qualities. Many say those leadership qualities are given from birth. It’s not true. We gain leadership qualities by solving problems and tasks, overcoming ourselves, and looking for compromises. We constantly absorb leadership qualities.

If something doesn’t stick together and you lose money, you need to understand that this is your problem. You chose the wrong manager. And if they win, it is a victory for the team. And this is normal. Because in the end, you won too.

Finally, I’ll talk about the meaning of life. Do you know that 70% of Ukrainians don’t like their job? They are looking for a better job, a job of their choice, or the meaning of life. Many people think that the meaning of life can be found. But this is not the case, it can only be created. And if you manage to create the meaning of life for yourself and your employees, you’ll have a very cool team.