Creating a successful startup can be a minefield. You must navigate through funding, sales, development, staffing, growth, and uncertainty. Protecting your startup while maintaining growth is always going to be a challenge. If you are worried about how to keep your startup successful, here are some ways that you can keep its forward momentum.
Hire the right people
Unless you are a modern renaissance man you cannot run a successful business by yourself. There are certain skills necessary for every company that cannot be filled by just one person. Without the right people, your startup will never get off the ground. To make sure you get the right person there are several steps to follow:
1. Write a great job posting
Make sure that the position you need filled gets seen by the right people. You can accomplish this by posting on job boards like monster.com, posting on social media, going to job fairs or creating a career page on your company website.
2. Conduct a thorough interview
When interviewing applicants there are two major things to look out for. Whether they meet the necessary skills for the job, and whether they will fit with the rest of the team. A candidate lacking in either of these circumstances will spell disaster. The interview is where you can really determine whether your candidate checks those boxes.
3. Utilize a background check
Hiring someone without a background check is like flying blind. You can’t be sure that the person you are hiring is who they say they are. A background check uncovers the warts in a candidate which might not come across during their interview or on their resume such as a criminal history, true education history, and their credit report.
4. Provide useful training
After the hiring process is over, now it’s time to train your candidate. Good training can produce valuable members of your team in a short period of time. Bad training can set back a hire and cost valuable time or money.
Because startups are often lean, this magnifies the importance of hiring. A bad hire in a large company might be a drain, but it can often be overlooked. In a startup, a bad hire will make up a significant part of the workforce and could even sink your company entirely.
Keeping your startup running requires funds. And if you are running at a loss, you need to get your money in a different way. There are two ways you can do this. You can take out a loan, which will give you interest payments and decreased profits but you will still keep 100% of your company. Or you can find an investor, which eliminates the interest payments at the cost of a percent of your company and the possibility of you no longer being the only person to have a say in how the company is run. Both have their advantages and drawbacks.
Know your product
Knowing your product front and back is a key to success. Proper market research will give you valuable information to help you know exactly who your product is for, how big your market is, and the best way to sell it. This information can be used to help you grow your business sustainably. Knowing where and how to market your product is invaluable. Unless you are a data scientist or marketing guru, it may be a good idea to hire a firm which can give you an unbiased report and help you make sense of your data.
Taking these into 3 pieces of advice into account should help keep your startup healthy and successful. There may be bumps in the road, but you’ve already had the vision. Now you just need the fortitude to see your company through the startup phase and into the next step of its growth cycle.
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Last modified: May 14, 2021