An entrepreneur’s biggest concern is probably how to make his or her company a success. There are some fundamentals that every startup needs to possess in order to survive: a good business model, a great product and a viable market.
But with nine out of every 10 startups going out of business, it takes more than the basics for a new company to stay afloat. Check out the characteristics that many successful startups share, and how they managed to stand out in the crowd.
Be Slightly Delusional and Crazy Passionate
True entrepreneurs are never driven solely by money. Your business will only really last if you believe your product will do more than just make you rich. If your goals extend beyond the financial and you are driven by passion, you are more likely to succeed. If you are just delusional enough to believe that you can beat the odds, then you won’t quit when the road inevitably gets a little bumpy. Companies that aren't passionate about their product will never manage to get that extra push to shift from good to great.
Always, always, always be flexible. With a new business, you need to be able to adjust to unfamiliar and difficult circumstances daily. Even if it terribly difficult, you must be able to let go of dreams when they become unrealistic, and instead work to create solutions. Successful companies have solid initial ideas, but they must be flexible and be willing to adjust in order to preserve the potential success of the business. Successful businesses are always looking for opportunities to improve. It is important to be able to fix mistakes quickly and thoughtfully and to learn from them.
Hire People For Their Work Ethic
Upon solely hiring people who are smart but don’t work hard, getting a business off the ground becomes more difficult. Leaders of great companies hire people who they know will have a strong work ethic — the people who are the first in the office in the morning and the last to leave at night. It’s also important that employees are efficient; employees who hang around the office idly aren’t optimal.
Be a Good Leader
A successful entrepreneur or executive is not someone who thinks he or she knows everything; rather, a leader is someone who surrounds him or herself with other capable, potentially brilliant people. Knowing your personal weaknesses is an important awareness to possess before building a strong team. When you can self-identify faults, you will be able to hire people who can compensate for them. That being said, it’s also important to remain flexible regarding the structure of your team. Even successful companies sometimes need to rethink internal organization and reporting structure.
Network Like a Pro
These days, social skills can play a huge part in a startup’s success. Networking allows for the creation of valuable connections to use throughout the growth of your business. An executive who knows influential people is priceless in the startup community.
Trust Your Customers and Audience
Great companies listen to customer feedback and consider suggestions. Negative feedback is even more important than accolades. There is always room for improvement; improvement is progress.
Become a Budget Master
Every successful startup must be able to manage its finances and be careful not to blow money too fast. Unnecessary expenses should always be avoided. When resources are limited, prove that it’s possible to do more with less.
Become a Master of Time Management
There are no nine-to-five days in the startup world. Balancing your goals without alienating your personal life can be a tough task. There will always be something to do, but the trick is to prioritize your to-do list and focus on the most necessary tasks. Remember, you can do anything, but you can’t do everything.
Know That It’s All About the Execution
An idea is worth nothing without the right execution. Even the most exciting idea means nothing with poor business sense. Making smart decisions is essential for the survival of a new business.
These elements are all crucial for the success of a startup. The process is stressful and overwhelming, so always keep your ultimate goal in mind. Remember what you’re trying to achieve and use it to motivate you every single day.