What I have learned working with startup companies and entrepreneurs:
In reflecting back on over 100s of sessions and many hours of working hands-on withentrepreneurial leadership teams, I’ve observed and learned some great lessons thatwill help you and your leadership team.My hope is that these lessons will serve as constants for you as you build a greatthe company, and that they’ll give you insight, something to shoot for, peace of mind, awake-up call, and a few aha’s.
Enjoy.It is said that 90% of startup companies fail.● Not ready to start a business● Did not define and validate their business● Not enough focus on the customer and too much on building of the product● They do not meet market needs● They don’t solve a specific problem in the market● Scale-up at the wrong time● Ran out of cashTiming is almost half of all the elements that lead to startup company success.Tip: Try using the Business Model Canvas: a one-page document to detail your startupideas. This is not as detailed as a Business Plan.Always keep your head up: move forward in all adversity; never give up Life is like anormal curve: “good, very good, bad, very bad and somewhat normal days”…………and long nights into daylight….Talk to other startup companies and entrepreneurs: you will always learn somethingnew from anyone you talk with along the winding road…..collaborate and work in thespirit of cooperation. Adversarial relationships do not work.
Use Pareto's 80/20 ABC Principle; PLAN AND WORK BY PRIORITIES: WORK DAILYON THE BIGGEST BANG FOR THE BUCK DOWN…..to lower priorities. Don’t say, “Ihave too much going on; too many balls in the air, wait a minute: stop andthink……PRIORITIZE THESE ISSUES…..now!! Work on the right issue at the righttimeWhat is the biggest challenge or priority for a startup company or entrepreneur?Answer: Financial Assistance: Investors; Pitch Deck Pitches to Investors; Fundraising;MONEY: PERIOD: Suggestion: do not borrow money from family and friends. Thismay come back to be your worst enemy………$$ Think before you borrow: usecommon sense; check your gut before you pull the trigger and shoot yourself.Roll with the punches!! There will be many UNPLANNED roadblocks and manypunches to the gut, some good jabs when you least expect it. LIFE IS WHATHAPPENS WHILE YOU ARE PLANING. Risks will occur: be ready toBRAINSTORM your way out of the unexpected problems…and they willcome…………….GUARANTEED!To start: What is missing in the world? Write the idea down and bounce ideasaround. Next, make a prototype and show the prototype to 100 people. What is theirreaction? Iterate on the prototype until it makes sense.Woman-Owned Small Businesses are included, but have different criteria:● To meet the small business size standard for primary NAICS (North AmericanIndustry Classification Code) code and conduct.● At least 51% unconditionally and directly owned by women who are US citizens● The woman must operate day-to-day operations● The woman must make long term decisions for the business● The woman must hold the highest officer position● The woman must work full time during normal business hours