Start-ups can be difficult to open and even harder to make successful. We've spoken a few times in the past few days about how a new business can open in 2020, but that's only part of the story. Start-up success stories are often few and far between. But that doesn't mean they're impossible to find! Here are three things you need to know if you want to make your start-up a success story.
The Harvard Business Review this past Spring published an excellent article about start-ups finding success by doing something non-traditional, written by Alex Lazarow. Lazarow makes two key arguments that I wanted to share.
First, he explains that many successful international start-ups manage to gain recognition by handling basic human needs. He writes, "by offering basic services, companies have the opportunity to become necessary to untapped customers.' Education services, for example, are needed more than ever but are often overlooked.
Second, Lazarow talks about how you don't need to follow what's trendy to succeed. He points to the case of GrubHub, which opened in the Midwest. But companies like GrubHub had a smart idea as well: focus on sustainability instead of just on flashiness. Coolness will get you noticed, but it's not the elixir to find success. Sometimes it might not feel this way, but flash only goes so far; sooner or later, you need to prove that you are worth investing in. A good business plan and cash on hand are vital for this.
Patrick Henry from Entrepreneur wrote a smart piece back in 2017 about why start-ups succeed. The article might seem dated, but its information is eternal. Henry's writing is an insightful look at start-ups in all their forms, but it is one detail that really stuck out to me.
Namely, the start-ups built for success are the ones that have a strong leader who knows what the company exists to do. In other words, know your market and audience. If there is no vision for your company, how do you know and communicate where you are going. Putting that vision in context is important that why knowing your competition is valuable as well.
If you're planning on opening a start-up in 2020, here are the three tips to consider:
Brian Cairns, CEO of Prostrategix Consulting. Over 25 years of business experience as a corporate executive, entrepreneur, and small business owner. For more information, please visit my LinkedIn profile