One cold, hard truth about start-ups is that 9 out of 10 fail.
Not necessarily because the ideas behind these short-lived businesses were wrong; but entrepreneurs, especially first-time entrepreneurs, make mistakes that could have been avoided had they had a little more experience or proper guidance.
So for all those who wish to become entrepreneurs some day and want to be their boss, we bring some tips that would help them make better decisions once they start their business. Just keep reading.
#1. Don’t Fall in Love with the Idea
One mistake that many first-time entrepreneurs make is they fall in love with their idea or product. They develop the design of a product or service in their mind and strive to achieve just that. However, in the process, they fail to analyze whether the product or service even has sufficient demand in the market or if the idea can be converted into a reasonable profit within a rational amount of time. Entrepreneurs should be flexible, opportunistic and agile in terms of adjusting to the reality and coping with unfavorable circumstances.
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#2. Don’t Go for Perfection
First-time entrepreneurs believe that they have the perfect plan and pool all their resources into making their product perfect. The reality-check comes in soon when they realize that they have exhausted their substantial resources and their product isn’t even on the market yet. When they do get around to launching their product in the market, they realize that people don’t want it. Therefore, before perfecting the business or the product, the idea should be to survive and get a substantial hold on the market before you take a bold step.
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#3. Know Who You Are Getting Into Bed With
Never start a business with someone you cannot completely trust, and neither should you trust anyone blindly. When you decide to explore a business opportunity with a partner, establish beforehand who brings what to the table. Money is not the only criteria for dividing the share of a company. You could bring expertise in the industry or big reputation against his share in the company. Also, you do not want to end up sharing half the company with someone who is more focused on his other ventures, all the while you are working long hours and weekends to make sure your business survives.
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#4. Know Money
Proper cash flow management is crucial for every startup. Make wrong operational decisions, and you will have more money going into the business than you see coming out. It is better to have some grasp of how the industry operates before you start your own company. Why most startups fail is because their owners made the perfect plan but did not know how things worked at the operational level. Do not hesitate from seeking advice from others and admit when you are wrong.
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#5. Be Meticulous And At The Same Time Don’t Be
When you start a company, it is like your baby, and you don’t want anything wrong to happen to it. You work late hours and give your everything just to make sure it doesn’t fail. The problem with first-time entrepreneurs is that they want everything to be their way and work themselves up paying attention to tiny details, which doesn’t even matter and end up paying less attention to something significant. Sometimes, smart work is more effective than hard work.
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#6. Indulge In Marketing
Marketing as a managerial process begins even before the inception of a company. It is about realizing if there is a demand for a product in the market; analyze who are willing to pay how much for what. The answer to this question will tell you what your product is, about the niche and the price of your product or service will be able to command in the market. Word-of-mouth is the best way to advertise, so try to create fans of your product, not just users.
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#7. Don’t Compare your Company to Others
Don’t assume that if some other company found success very early in its lifecycle, yours is going to do the same, or if another business focused on revenue quite late after it was founded, yours will too. Every industry is different and so is every business. Plan accordingly, adjust swiftly, seek guidance and work will all your heart.
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These are some tips we wanted to share with people who wish to start their own business. If you have something to share, leave us a comment; we would love to hear what you have to say.
(Feature Image Courtesy: Ali Mayar)