A Handful of Secrets for Startup Survival
Contagious American Dream… To startup your own company! Well you see it’s actually the dream of countless millions of women and men around the world. There are about 582 million entrepreneurs in the world. Dreams don’t always come true though. Actually, when it comes to the dream of building your own successful business, the odds are stacked against you. In the U.S., about a quarter of startups die in year one and nearly half of these die by the fifth year while only 30% remain by year ten.
Yes, risk takers are on the rise, and it’s not j.t a young person’s game since people between the ages of 40 to 60 years old launch 60% of new ventures. Even in communist countries, entrepreneurs are on the rise. Take Hong Kong, China for example where the rise of entrepreneurs is shaking up the economy (Hong Kong’s Rising Startup Scene, Forbes). Consider India, where increasingly people are taking risks on their own business dreams, Country Startup Rankings. Then look at Canada, United Kingdom and Israel who are ranked as #2 through #4 respectively in best countries to have a tech startup, Quora Tech Startup Ranking. This global entrepreneurial spirit is stupendous and contagious, however, it’s a dangerous path. Startups globally are fighting similar survival rates and struggles as U.S. businesses do. Everyone knows it is perilous. to venture your own startup. Interesting though that today in the U.S. we’re seeing one of the lowest recorded entrepreneurial failure rates measured in the past few years. Wow!
The multi-million dollar question on the minds of entrepreneurs and business leaders is simply, “what can I do to get an edge in my business, survive perils, and make a lot of money?” The answer cannot be found in a simple, sweet, and short acronym. Nor can it be discovered in a clever cliché from a famous or possibly brilliant person. So, what is the answer to making your business dream come alive?
Analyzing startup statistics reveals secrets to success:
Statistically, reversing the mistakes of these 5-factors greatly increases startup success rates:
- Persistence is the number one killer and the most important factor for an entrepreneur! Too often procrastination kills dreams. Being persistent is crucial for overcoming rejections. The book, Overcoming the 15 Categories of Rejection, is a great support for everyone who struggles to keep going and is feeling like giving up.
a. Don’t know what to do to get going? Well, start with doing these two things; first, do Internet research on your business, which will tremendously expand your vision and understanding of where to start. Then make a simple pre-business plan with bullet points on what should be done immediately, and in the short-term. Second, move to fulfilling every step of your pre-plan, continuously researching the Internet, and learning about your business. Talk to people in that type of business when possible.
b. Force your sales to start ASAP because a business isn’t a business until you have sales. Get pre-sales if you have to. Entrepreneurs get easily distracted by the busy work and the idea of starting the business that they over invest time and energy in set up work and neglect selling which is the ultimate market test! Check out, What Came First, The Business or The Businesses’ First Sale
- Planning, if you’re moving forward (after pre-planning) then you need to develop a well-defined business plan with metrics and milestones on a timeline that’s tracked and carried out with a disciplined management style is a game changer; “The devil is in the details.”
a. 70% of startups do have a business plan they think is “great,” but it is grossly inadequate and lacking reality in budgeting, forecasting, recruiting, marketing, sales and a systems for management; special emphasis on sales operations as an issue, so a success tactic is to test your idea on the market before launch and if you haven’t already, then look for pre-sales now.
b. Expertise in all the necessary areas is rarely harnessed in business plans, and instead one to two people pretend to have all the answers and are scared to open up to outsiders to get help for fear their idea will be stolen; major mistake and the result is a sheltered idea and plan that often has no actual market need (42% fail due to no market need).
- Capital, because cash is king and cash flow is a leading crippler and killer for startups, thus, knowing funding needs and securing it can help prevent 24% of failures.
a. 32% of people use their own cash to startup and most believe 18 months or less of cash flow is adequate, yet it’s best to prepare 30 to 36 months of cash reserve instead of being like those 33% who start with $5,000 or less and the 25% of people who start with $25,000 or less.
b. It takes time to get clients, sometimes several months, and depending upon your business and payment terms, even more time to get paid by clients, so start looking for clients as early as you can and ideally startup with commitments from clients to ease cash flow burdens; bootstrapping startups are much more successful when launching with clients in hand.
- Experience, is something an entrepreneur has to earn in order to possess in themselves, however, wise leaders know they can hire experienced people, thus, a combination of both can kick start success.
a. Get all the stakeholders and expertise you can on your side by creating a Board of Advisers (you don’t always have to pay them) so you can increase your knowledge, idea generation, networking and become a stronger visionary and implementer (be advised, knowing when to listen to advisers and when not to is a tremendous skill).
b. Allow others to help you build your plan, hire talent, and sell; instead of being scared, shy or just too damn self reliant, because a flourishing company requires a team and a captain to lead the team, so be a great captain.
- Methodology, adhering to proven systems for management that impact people, processes, growth communications, and client experience is rare for startups, yet when combined with the first 3 tips can increase success rates by 50%! Check out the link; The Renaissance Methodology is proven to help all kinds of businesses succeed because of its system of for structuring and growing companies.
a. Unfortunately it’s true that most good entrepreneurs don’t make great CEOs as their company grows, and an even graver reality is that most entrepreneurs get in their own even as a solo operation because they think they know it all despite the fact they probably say… “I know I don’t know it all,” stop lying and take action; increase discipline, work from 7am to 7pm, and later when necessary. Plus, learn… learn… learn with podcast, competitive analysis, books, tradeshows, competitors, listen to your prospects and customers and use this all to improve your business.
b. Strive to grow your business and add people because until you have a business that operates without you in it then you’re still just an employee pretending you’re not, therefore, embracing a true systems for management, tweaking it, and deploying it every day is imperative. So get a leg up by starting with proven business methodology that builds a sales oriented company that constantly asks customers how to improve; Success tactic – measure everything and build dashboards accessible on your phone.
Bonus – Another major success secret is that 82% of successful business owners did not doubt they had the right qualifications and proper experience to run a company. Meaning, confidence and self-belief are the heart and soul of successful entrepreneurs. A closer look by C-Level Global indicates these people readily seek outside expertise and work hard to learn often. Entrepreneurs struggling with Mind Blocks (as defined in the discovery of The 15 Categories of Rejection) to their success are in dire straits and should rethink starting a business and get immediate help from the book; Overcoming The 15 Categories of Rejection.
Key to unlocking startup success secrets is following the playbook of Renaissance Methodology:
First, you have to take action, so Engineer the well-designed plan to your vision and Reengineer it until it’s ready. Energize your idea internally and externally to gain momentum to launch. Nominate the right people to be on your side by getting all the possible stakeholders on your side for all the work ahead. Apply an Integrated Shared Service to serve as your systems for management even if you’re solo. Accelerate the plan by taking action and implementing the steps on-time daily. Negate the barriers by seeing them ahead of time and being adaptable enough to overcome on the spot as necessary. Communicate, communicate and over communicate with everyone involved and especially don’t forget the voice of the customer. Evolve through metrics. Know thy numbers or die! Especially, know your unit cost or cost to service. Above all else, drive lead generation and sales. Pick up the phone and make calls every day until you can build a business development system that works for you and that you can get others to duplicate. In the U.S. you can be brain-dead and “start” a business, but to grow and thrive in business it takes building a sales oriented organization (What Came First… The Business or The Business’s First Sale). This requires the majority of your company operations to be fixated on growth. For example, collect cell numbers to text branding and promotional materials and write or procure content to consistently email to prospects and customers. Constantly ask for customer feedback on how to keep improving and actually listen and deploy change.
Winning Bottom Line:
Startup dreams don’t have to just be a fantasy. What these statistics tell us above all else is an awe-inspiring message; Unlock the statistical startup success secrets and get proven experience and methodology on your side in order to raise your success probability as high as 75%.Minimize chance and maximize control over your destiny using well-defined plans and extensive metrics (Use the Theory of Accelerance for metrics on people and processes). Have enough capital and spend carefully. Believe in yourself, yet be real and don’t allow yourself to believe you can do it all. Allow for others to help rather it be funding, recruiting, channel development, marketing, sales or operations. Thinking you can “wait till later in the life of the business to pay attention to building or improving these details is statistically going to be your demise. Set pride and busy schedules aside, build a system for management that’s revenue focused. Now go make your dream a success!