Before we dissect the topic. Let’s start out by defining the characteristics of a small team. They generally have: less than ten(10) members, ‘just ok’ LinkedIn profiles(if any), don’t have decades of experience with fortune 500 companies, aren’t intertwined with venture-backed firms and not connected to Wall Street.
In a time where most projects are loaded with individuals in the form of a ‘primary’ team, advisors, etc. It seems as if there is no room for the smaller teams but when you get down to core of it; shouldn’t the teams that start out small really be the focus of the market? Particularly during ICOs and Token sales? Isn’t this why Bitcoin was created by an anonymous developer or a small team of developers in the first place? Think about it.
Small teams won’t always have venture-backed funds, huge partnerships, “all star” LinkedIn profiles or experienced advisors. What they should have though is at least a visionary or someone with adept knowledge in the technology they are trying to build; perfect if they have both. In this instance small teams are worth taking a risk on because they generally (not always) have three characteristics that are rare in the crypto space: Passion, Commitment and Transparency.
Passion — It’s cliché, but if you love what you do then you are not likely to give up on it. In the cryptocurrency space there are many buzz words or phrases. Some of them include: “revolutionize”, “first of its kind”, “unique”, “solid team”, “great project”. While those words might indeed fit some projects it doesn’t fit them all. Passion is an intangible trait but you can tell this from the founder’s expression whether through action, oral or verbal communication or a combination. Small teams usually rely on a founder that can drive them to the peak of the mountain (not the “Moon”) through action by working on the technology they are developing with his/her own coding skills or communicating the vision with zeal.
Commitment — In the traditional tech space. Missing deadlines is often frowned upon and will costs you some serious investor money. In the crypto world, missing deadlines are the norm. This is not to say that missing deadlines should never be acceptable but it shouldn’t be the modus operandi either. Small teams know what is at stake and they generally rely on meeting deadlines in order to generate interests and expand their community
Transparency — This is one trait that most projects lack. There seems to be a lot of secrecy and in most cases many things are kept in the dark from coin and or token holders. It is understandable in the sense that communicating specific details may help your competitors but what about providing a progress update? That’s not the only problem either, some communities are a desert; especially in Reddit and the mods will be the first to say “They are busy working on the tech, so no one has time to market or communicate” OR communication and updates are non-existent, period. It doesn’t and shouldn’t have to be this way. Small teams sometime rely on transparency to move up the ladder. Take an example from the success(you can define this anyway you like) of TRON(TRX) getting into the top 10 before it became a big team. Justin Sun mastered transparency. He communicated, provided updates, kept the community informed and was accessible.
Small teams can cope and they can deliver. Sometimes it’s not about the industry established names but rather seeking out potential. Four teams that are doing just that are listed below:
Request Network — 9 Team Members (All Time High— 0.97) Ranked #81 on CMC
Neblio — 5 Team Members (All Time High— $64.87) — Ranked #84 on CMC
Ubiq — 5 Team Members (All Time High — $7.21) — Ranked #133 on CMC (Constantly ranks in the top 5 whattomine.com; Peak Position #1)
Shift — 9 Team Members (All Time High — $12.85) — Ranked #204 on CMC
These teams prove that giving the right people the opportunity can make a big difference. Let’s remember when investing particularly in Token Sales and ICOs that sometimes smaller teams are worth the risk because they often carry three (3) traits: Passion, Commitment and Transparency. If it is only about the established names, star studded line-ups, exceptional networks, etc. Then putting majority of your eggs in the Big Finance basket where you yield 20+% gains in a very good year of trading is just for you. Cryptocurrency is about advancement and autonomy through decentralization and as such we should try to decentralize the opportunities. If we fail to do so, we are harnessing the characteristics of centralization in a psychological manner. This can only be a step backwards in how we shape our future.