As a Startup entrepreneur it’s easy for your work to become your life, and 8 years to effortlessly slip by.
I founded what has become The Startup Garage in January of 2008 with passion for helping entrepreneurs start and launch companies of impact.
Our business, team, and services have evolved, transformed, and changed many times over. Yet, throughout the years the fears, issues, and struggles seen amongst first time founders have remained the same.
As a Startup founder, regardless of where you are geographically or financially, there appears to be common threads, and snags all of us face at one point or another along the journey.
In 8 years of service, The Startup Garage, has helped over 200 companies, non-profits, social enterprises, find success. In celebration of our 8 year anniversary, I’d like to share with you.
My Top 8 Success Tips:
Startups take time. Create a plan that avoids too much false or unnecessary urgency.
Having a false sense of urgency can keep us from putting our energy into the right things at the right time. It’s true, success doesn’t just happen, it requires careful, detailed planning and action. Be sure to enlist the help of business plans, checklists and project management platforms, to prioritize and stick with daily, weekly, monthly, and annual goals.
Don’t focus too much on the product/service. Balance your focus.
All to often entrepreneurs become so excited over their product or service, that they get lost in their own enthusiasm. The core of the business might be the problem the product solves. But, it’s imperative to give equal weight to other key comments of the business like, the team, the marketing strategy, business model and customer feedback.
There is plenty of investor money out there for companies who reach the milestones investors care about. Know what investors care about and focus on that.
Remember as an entrepreneur your perspective and mindset, often times differs from that of an investor. We’ve designed a helpful infographic here>> Achieve Investor Milestones
to keep you visually in tune with achieving the milestones investors care about, to communicate with them in a language they understand.
Founders are the biggest problem for most startups. Get out of your own way.
We call this the founder’s dilemma, and it’s a big one. Founders don’t let go easy, surrendering control, delegating tasks, and learning to be a leader rather than a micro-manager can take time. Recognize the dilemma and start delegating tasks even if it feels uncomfortable.
Healthy founders leads to healthy startups.
Founders are the core of a business inspiration, motivation, and success starts with you, then ripples out to the organization at large. Your business is your responsibility, treat it with care by caring for your health and well-being. To be efficient and firing at a high caliber it’s essential to embrace a healthy physical routine, and check in with your mental state. Moderation is key, working non-stop leads to startup burnout, and doesn’t help anyone within your startup.
Know your exit strategy.
Knowing your end game, makes every decision easier. Having clarity on on your exit plan, whether it’s not exiting, Merger & Acquisition, or IPO affects how you run your business day to day.
Planning is critical
The lifecycle of you startup depends upon planning, documenting, and communicating even the most mundane tasks.
Take on the student role and always be learning.
The smartest founders, are the ones that don’t know all the answers. Being a lifetime learner, evokes greater innovation and creativity. Knowledge is power and will help increase awareness of the world around you.