Let’s start with the foundational question. What exactly is a startup? Some may think it’s simply launching a business. Well, it is, but it’s not at the same time.
A startup is launching a business that hasn’t exactly been done before, and if it sort of has been done, it hasn’t been done in a particular form or fashion. That means it stands apart from other who are doing it in such a way that it can, many times, literally put others out of the game or give great competition.
Take for instance digital publishing and newspapers. Back in the day, there used to be a newspaper stand everywhere. As a matter of fact, that was the only way to remain up to date on everything. People subscribed to a hardcopy of the newspaper. However, when the internet came along and there was digital publishing, instead of reading a day late news, news became current and up to the minute online. The need for hardcopy newspapers dwindled as online publishing began to rule, delivering the same news but at an awesome speed.
The same thing can be said of the cellular phone business. Instead of having to pay a quarter at the phone booth, why not have a phone handy wherever you go? The birth of the cellular phone completely destroyed the phone booth. You may find one – broken – lingering around with no hook.
Startups are similar to that type of launch and if good enough, take over – an entrepreneur has an idea that hasn’t and isn’t being done, and they decide to launch it to fulfill what is missing in the community or make things more convenient for society overall.
So now that you know that a startup isn’t just a business but a unique business that hasn’t been done before, do you have what it takes to launch it?
Here are some items that you need to have in order before, during and after opening:
- Ongoing Ideas to Make it Better – Times change and people do, too. There is a younger audience that gets older and there is a new younger audience coming up. Know the rhythm of change and your business should act accordingly. Your business or product should remain in touch with whoever it targets. What worked for them, may not work for those.
- Executable Business Plan – Business plans start out one way and end another. What makes a great business plan is that it is executable. Business plans may be edited, so do so. Scale the plan so that every step matters and pushes toward another goal on the way to success.
- Capital (Venture, Bootstrapped, Crowdfunding or Loan) – You must have money. Investors, your own money, and some people even go so far as securing bank loans. Do what is best for your startup, and be certain that the money spent is making cents and not making broke.
- Obvious Profit – If you aren’t sure how your bank account will stay in the positive and not the negative, re-evaluate your pricing and what you are spending. If nothing works out with the math, scrap the plans. The math must work in order for the business to succeed.
- Willingness to Work Hard – It’s not a 9 to 5. It’s more like a 9 to 9 on a good day, especially in the beginning. However, even when you sleep, you dream of the next idea, how you can reach, accommodate, expand and flat out survive.
- Have an Achieving Attitude – No matter what, whenever you rest at night, tomorrow is full of success because you will grab it.
Those are some of the items necessary for a startup. Do you have them?