How to build a successful startup
The first step is to find a viable business idea to turn into reality. You need to make extensive market research into what could be a viable business idea and do not be afraid of testing your idea. Talk to friends and family and ask for their feedback.
Plan your idea
Having dreams and aspirations is great, but you need to change your mindset to think of them as goals in order to come up with an action plan. Write down a business plan. A business plan will help you plan for your business’s future. Revise your business plan as you make progress with the execution of your ideas to assess where you need to make changes in your broader business plan.
In order to be successful, you need to have a genuine passion for what you are trying to build. If you have genuine passion for your project, it will naturally lead to commitment. As challenging as it may be, running a business is one of the most fulfilling experiences for an aspiring entrepreneur. Without passion, you are likely to feel overwhelmed by the scale of the challenges you face as you try to grow your startup, which could lead to mental fatigue.
Funding your startup
Focusing on the development aspect of your startup is important, but you also need to have a plan for funding everything. Are you funding the business out of personal savings, by borrowing from friends and family or are you taking a loan? Maybe you are considering approaching angel investors. Do you need funding for marketing in the initial stage and if so have you considered how much you need to set aside before you have any revenue? Refer back to your business plan.
Create a customer base
Once you have officially launched your company and promoted it, the key to building a successful startup is building a loyal customer base. Your customers should be front and center of your business. Customer centricity is the lifeblood of any business and is the only way to ensure consistent and sustainable growth. Customer centricity can mean different things in different industries but broadly speaking, it’s about building the key functionalities of your business around resolving the needs of your customers and doing it better than your competitors. This can also present itself as a dilemma as customer centricity does not always equate to profitability in the short term, which is why very few startups actually build their businesses around their customers’ needs. However, it is important to take a long term view of your business aims and insist on serving your customers better than all your competitors because, at the end, that is the only thing that will ensure the survival and sustainability of your start-up.
Startup founders must have the leadership skills to communicate their vision to their team and to motivate them to bring that vision to life. Whilst it is common knowledge that start-up founders work extremely long hours and get through a plethora of tasks on a budget or free of any costs, it is important to remember that you cannot do everything by yourself. To be able to grow a start-up you need to have the ability to attract talented people to join you at a time when you may not be able to pay them as much as your competitors. Having the right leadership skills will help you find ways to motivate your team and to get the best out of them in challenging circumstances.
Lastly, remember that your startup will not lead to success overnight. As an entrepreneur, as a leader and as a startup founder, it’s critical to be realistic about your expectations. Many business owners tend to give up too soon before any results can be seen. Set yourself realistic goals and take your startup business one step at a time and enjoy the journey.
By Jahed Morad at Gulbekian Andonian Solicitors
Jahed is an experienced lawyer whose practice comprises of immigration, employment, and commercial law. Jahed is also an avid writer who enjoys sharing insights and tactical know-how relating to his areas of expertise.