5 Lessons every Founder must Learn
from Bizinga.com 12 June 15 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
a Breakthrough Model. I help entrepreneurs design & build successful tech products that solve real problems. Needless to say, we have a great success rate. But when I look at the market and I can see that 90% (arguably more) of startups fail to commercialize it frustrates me. What I realized is that most startups don’t fail because they lack a ‘breakthrough model’. Even an average model can generate many millions of dollars per month.
Why Startups Fail. They also don’t fail because their Marketing Strategy was flawed. Or their data was inaccurate. Or they couldn’t get funding. Most of them don’t fail for any of those reasons. The real reason why they fail is because they aren’t ready to be entrepreneurs.
1. Take Responsibility for your own Success. Hands down, one of the biggest reasons people don’t succeed in their startup is because they don’t take responsibility for it. In other words, they put the responsibility of their startup’s success in the hands of someone else. The only way your business will be successful is if you do the following:
– Take complete responsibility for your business success or failure
– Hire compatible partner & team
– Do whatever it takes to get from where you are to where you need to be
– Learn the skills you need to keep it moving forward
– Learn about your market & customer
– Raise the finance you need to fund your startup
– Work with experts to create a game plan
As a business owners we need to realise that it’s our responsibility to ensure our businesses are successful.
2. Work on your Personal Confidence. Confidence is one of the absolute musts for all entrepreneurs. Now don’t go mistaking ‘confidence’ with cockiness or arrogance. You’ll be making a fatal mistake to your Startup. Arrogance is the need to be a dick about it. Confidence doesn’t mean you have to be loud and audacious. I know plenty of successful entrepreneurs who are introverts, but they’re still confident.
So how do you work on your Confidence? Without getting into too much detail, the most important factor to realize is that confidence is the child of self-belief. If you believe in yourself or if you believe that by taking a certain action you will achieve a certain result then you’ll feel confident. And so the real question is; what can I do to change my beliefs?
Understand that Self-Belief is a condition. And a condition is a result of your environment. In fact, your current state belief is a result of your current environment. Ask yourself this question; are you in a supportive or non-supportive environment? If the answer is anything other than “I’m in a supportive environment and I fully believe in my abilities” then you must change your environment. Simple! Here are a number of aspects of your environment that need to change:
– Your friends; do you hang out with people who are supportive of your goals? Do they move you steadily towards achieving your vision? Are their visions in line with your own?
– Your habits; do you watch TV or read good books? Do you think affirmative thoughts or negative thoughts? Where does your source of information come from?
– Your home; do you feel inspired by your significant other? Do you live in an place that inspires you?
– Your work; do you feel inspired by your work? Does your job/team motivate you to be a better person?
3. Have an “empowering” Vision. Your vision should be – what impact your startup will have on the world. It’s about “how your business will make other’s lives better.” Why is this so important? 3 reasons;
a) Once you have the house, the cars, the wife, the office, the net worth, the income and all the other material things that you always wanted, there wouldn’t be anything left to work hard for.
b) On those cold, rainy days, when bad stuff keeps happening to you, you need a reason to keep pushing. And most of the time, money won’t do it.
c) Ultimately you’re going to need to get some help. And people/team/friends will naturally only do the bare minimum for money, but they’ll move mountains, break their back and walk a thousand miles for a vision that empowers them.
Better Place. The most important thing you can do before you wrap up your time on this planet, is simply this: make sure that the world is a better place because you were here. That’s it. The other thing you need to do is stop working in a vacuum. Talk about your Vision. Talk about what you want to achieve and most importantly talk about why that’s important to you.
Share. Letting the world know that you’re working on something special and important makes them want to be a part of it too. Don’t feel nervous that people are going to steal your idea. Be confident that you’re capable of turning this idea into a successful company. And be confident that you’re a 100 times better than your competitors could ever be. Bring your friends and family into your inner circle and turn your friends into your PR Agents.
4. Manage your Energy. Your company’s success is 100% impacted by your performance. And your performance is 100% impacted by your health. Your health on the other hand is largely impacted by what you eat and how much you move your body. Poor performance can impact you in the following areas;
– Your decision making
– How much you can get done in a day
– How you speak to the people in your business
– The quality of your work
5. Master the Power of Sales. The biggest problem people have in business is a lack of cash. Which is directly impacted by sales. Rarely is a lack of inventory or a lack of capacity an issue. Influencing people to make the right decision is the single most important skill you could ever develop. Of course there’s a fair bit of responsibility that comes with that sort of power, so be ethical. You may think that you don’t need sales because you’re in a tech startup. But you’re wrong. Sales is the one skill that’s transferable across all businesses, and all industries. If you don’t have it…then get it.
Sales Mastery is the ability to:
a) Understand what someone needs
b) Explain to them, in their own words why you’re product/service is perfect for them (again, be ethical…)
c) Empower them with the understanding that this is the right decision
d) Help them attain your product/service
Tech startups need the Sales as much as any other company to;
– Convince people to use their product/service (even if it’s online marketing)
– Convince investors to part with their money
– Keep staff engaged in their work and the company vision
– Engage their network
The power of influence is a learned skill. So if you’re not a natural influencer today, then start working on it and become one tomorrow.
Comments: Can you think of any other Lessons that a Founder must learn?