It can be tough bringing someone new into the team.

All the worries about whether they’ll fit in, can they do what they say they can do, will they work at the right pace, can they think as well as do, are they bigger than the job, smaller, good in the trenches, precious?

Ultimately, do we add value to each other?

There’s only one definitive way to work it out and it’s not with a gotcha interview question, a field test or code review. It’s by actually doing the work.

It doesn’t have to mean signing long-term contacts from the start.

Carve out a side project or small piece of the bigger pie that allows everyone to work with each other before committing to the larger game. A live test of how things might be if we pooled our efforts – without risking employment, partnership or equity worries.

Use real life to find out whether we’re better together, can work through problems, are greater than the sum. If we survive and come out smiling, it’s time to commit.

Skippy Strategy: There’s always a way to work together on something before you work together in something. When the stakes are higher than average – be creative, find it.