Getting a startup company off the ground can be a challenging and involved business. When optimizing your business idea, you have to take all of the factors into consideration that could lead you to success.
While many people have great business ideas, not everyone can turn these ideas into a profitable company. Sadly, the statistics for new businesses succeeding after five years are low. Dan Lok, a business expert who has helped many companies structure themselves for success, gives 11 top tips for ramping up your startup business and moving forward into a prosperous future.
1. Make Sure That Your Product Solves a Real Problem
The most important driver of your business should be the problem that it helps to solve. You will need to take a close look at your market and find the gaps where your business might fall. Understanding what makes a business profitable takes some time, and you will be well-served by doing extensive research.
The best companies are those that meet the consumer’s needs and can adapt as their needs change.
2. Take Leadership Seriously
When you are a team leader, you will need to have a foundational idea and direction that will lead your business forward. While your idea may be amazing, your leadership and drive will be absolutely necessary for driving your business’s future success. You must provide an excellent example for your employees, showing your work ethic, attitude, and determination in their best light.
If you are insincere about your business idea or only in it for the money, your employees will sense this and won’t work as hard for you. Ideally, you want your employees to be personally invested in your business’s fortunes, and to treat the company as one of their top priorities.
3. Hire the Right Team
Team-building is a major part of developing your startup business. Even though the vision for your ultimate goal may be yours and yours alone, you need to get your team members on board. It is key to surround yourself with employees who understand your vision for the company and who can help you set the mindset and culture for the organization.
4. Rely on Mentors
When you are starting a new business, it is understandable that you will have many questions. When you find a collection of mentors who can help you, you will be much better off. Experienced entrepreneurs can help startup companies get through some of the thorniest problems a new business can face.
Don’t hesitate to ask people to mentor you. Many people are flattered that you would ask.
5. Set Your Company Culture Early On
Too many business owners avoid discussing company culture because the concept has been treated like a buzzword and just for show. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Setting your startup’s culture will be one of the major initial steps to your success.
Company culture can be thought of as the internalized behaviors performed by your employees. If there are strong values of honesty, integrity, and collaboration, your business will benefit. It is also a good idea to make sure that your business puts a great deal of emphasis on taking good ideas from employees at every level.
6. Set Up a Business Entity Right Away
When you are first beginning your startup company, you may be self-funding the enterprise and claiming it on your personal income taxes. It is crucial to set yourself up as a registered business right away. This way, your personal assets will be protected.
7. Work with Signed Contracts
When a startup first begins, the entrepreneurs may be very loose with their paperwork and enter into many verbal agreements. These can be dangerous to the future of your company. You need to have everything spelled out on paper. This will protect both parties from future, costly legal action.
8. Be Careful with Your Ideas
In the initial stages of your startup, you won’t want to go around shouting about your business idea. Before your company is well-established with its own reputation, there is a possibility that someone will poach your idea. In the end, you will have to start talking about your business idea in order to secure funding. It is best that you keep your ideas under your hat until you are ready to do this.
9. Protect Intellectual Property
This is another area where you must be extremely careful. You need to identify and protect all of your IP or intellectual property. If you don’t, your business may suffer from dangerous competition in the future.
10. Lay Out a Path for Success
Sit down and envision where you want your company to be in six months, a year, five years, and ten years. If you don’t have concrete future goals to work toward, your efforts may be aimless. Taking the time to sit down and map out your future can be a huge help in making short- and long-term goals.
11. Establish Yourself as an Expert
Your reputation as an expert means a lot when it comes to legitimizing your startup business. People will not want to do business with you if you are not recognized as an authority. Take the time to speak and write about your business ideas. If you can establish yourself as a leading voice in your field, more people will be drawn toward being a customer or an investor.
Preparing for Success
When you are getting ready to go into business for yourself, you may be full of questions and uncertainty. Make sure that you have lined up mentors or an advisory board to help you over some of the hurdles that affect every new company. Dan Lok reminds all startup owners that your idea is only as good as the sweat equity you put into it.
The post Dan Lok Discusses How Entrepreneurs Can Get Their Startup Off the Ground appeared first on Home Business Magazine.