How to Succeed as a Startup
The first five years of life as a Startup business can be very crucial, therefore the make or break period of time. 50% of business ventures fail. The question is, though, how will you ensure that your startup business succeeds where others fall?
“The only way to make something great is to prototype and test it. Polish your idea to perfection.” – Isabel Lizardi, Chief Commercial Officer of Bare Conductive.
You must ask yourself important and difficult questions, not just leave it all to the views of your friends and family. Does your business idea resolve an issue people are experiencing or satisfy a need that you have identified? If the answer is no, then why do you expect people to come to you and not the competition? Consider the process of monetising your concept and how effective it will be. Also, you need to be able to identify a solid and recognisable USP.
Research, Research and a Little More Research
“Understand where money changes hands, how often, how many layers, how much and what margin?” – Dr Nick Allott, Founder of NquiringMinds.
Create a solid business plan by getting your research on point. You need to understand the demographic you’re targeting as well as your niche market. The growth or decline of the sector will massively affect how successful your business is, so be sure to possess an in-depth knowledge of this. What direct competitors do you have? Are there any indirect competitors that could deliver your product?
Get Your Team Right
“You need fantastic, motivated people. Give them everything they need and give them free reign to create.” – Brian Donnelly, CEO and Founder of Synapse Information Ltd.
If you’re going to be successful then you’re going to have to surround yourself with the right people. Evaluate the skills required and determine whether you need co-founders, employees or external consultants. Be careful who it is exactly you hire as these members of staff could soon shape the face of your business.
Sort Out Your Finances
“You can get grants or investor money, but the best money is client money.” – Peter Lilley, Director and Co-Founder of iGeolise Ltd.
Avoid surprises and create a long-term financial plan. How long will your initial cash actually last? Once it has run out, you’re going to need to consider a round of investment or be in a position where you can support yourself on the revenue you receive from clients. Be realistic about your early demand, your company won’t suddenly surge in popularity without good reason. Remember to factor in the production and staff costs into your financial plan, especially if you’re looking to take on employees.
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