As Thomas Edison once said, “Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.”
This articles will give you an overview of the other ingredients contributing to the success of your business.
Establish your Core Team
You may see yourself as the ‘jack of all trades’ or you realise that you do not have the skills and expertise in specific areas that your business require, that’s when it hits you that you cannot do everything yourself. You will need to scout for people who possess those skills who can complement you and your business.
Who you hire in the initial stages of your business is key, as they will be the core team who will build the company. In addition to sharing the same values of your business goal and entrepreneurial traits, this core team will need to establish trust and respect each other.
Building the Right Culture
Rather than assigning designation titles to the core team, create a culture where seniority is trumped by ideas. This will establish a culture of flexibility instead of defining roles based on job description. Once the business has stabilized, specific roles and responsibilities can be defined accordingly. Growth and a sense of mission do more to motivate the team than anything else.
Majority of startups are funded from personal savings or business loans. There are a few early-stage businesses that are funded with venture capital. If you are considering external investment, you will need to at least have a minimum viable product (MVP). MVPs are defined as the most basic version of your product that your business can release into the market. The aim of the MVP is to let early customers or investors see the vision or promise of the final product.
Prudent Cost Allocation
Once your products have reach your targeted customers, you will want to increase that market share, and how best to do this, is via advertising and promotions. However as your business may be off to a good start, do not be complacent and start spending on marketing campaigns vigorously. Only carefully consider investing in new opportunities when you can convinced of its return. Only when you are have establish a healthy cashflow, can you then consider spending a little more.
To determine if your cashflow is healthy, you will need to manage your company’s accounts. Familiarise yourself with basic accounting principles. Alternatively you can always use a software or engage an accountant to assist you. If you are the business owner you would also want to be able to project financial figures. This allows you to check on the company’s current progress and set targets. Consider a series of performance metrics to measure and quantify your targets.
Engage with your Customers
Understanding what your customers need is crucial for your company to succeed. Do find out if they are interested in making a purchase. Strong sales are usually driven by knowing how much your customers are willing to pay to purchase the product or benefits that they will enjoy by making that purchase. Make sure that this vital information is made available to your team.
Unique Selling Propositions (USP) are Overrated
Now that you have acquired the information above, you may be thinking how your product can stand out from the rest. But in this modern day, being different, distinctive or unique is not the end game. Instead you should be looking at getting your customers to take action. Your product must remain relevant to you customers and your message must compel them to take actions. Once you have appeal to their emotional component of the decision making process, chances are you will win the customer.
As entrepreneurs, you must focus on building a business that can stay relevant despite market developments and adapt to change when required. Constantly revisit your product offering and follow-through feedback you receive to look for opportunities for enhancements.
If you are constantly reinventing any aspects of your business, you will quickly run out of energy and money. Thus formalizing routine processes and procedures will save you time and money by increasing overall efficiency of your company, and improve the quality of products and service delivery by your team. This can be done by documenting standard operating procedures and provide training to staff.
Successful businesses not only start from a good idea, but consist of most of the components shared in this article. Together with a competent team, careful financial planning and having standardize procedures, you will be able to ensure that your business delivers its products and services with consistent quality and efficiency.