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3 Absolute Basics To Breathe Life Into Your Startup



So, you are passionate about something and have identified an area needing a significant amount of improvement in there; what better time to take the leap and have a startup of your own? I mean, isn’t it the best when you can turn your passion into profession?

Absolutely right, now is the time to plunge into that entrepreneurial venture, perhaps better than ever, just as countless people around the globe. But I also happen to personally see and know many people taking the bait, biting off much more than they could possibly chew and biting the dust eventually.

Now, does it mean you shouldn’t think of initiating a startup? Absolutely not; all I am saying is to know exactly what you are about to jump into. Whether you like it or not, a magnificent idea will only get you so far. Isn’t it just plain common sense to bring along an umbrella if you see clouds covering the skies?

If you are certain it’s about time to start your own company, I am just here to assist you in getting some absolute basics totally right, so that your odds of actualizing your dream get better.

Here are three basic steps to breathe life into your startup:

1. It takes two to tango – assemble a reliable founding team

Why? I mean you can very much raise your eyebrows to the idea of assembling a founding team, but before you do so, just come up with a few of the most successful business ventures of our times.

Most of you will start the list by Apple, of course. What about Google? Did I forget to mention Twitter? What about Yahoo and Microsoft? In case you are wondering what’s the point of mentioning all these names, all of them had two cofounders when they started.

So, what do I want to establish? Well, nothing more than the fact that the odds of success of a startup enhance manifold when it is cofounded by two individuals. Does it also mean that a single person or a team comprising of more than two has no chances of success? Surely not, there’s no single formula to a startup success, but stats support the notion that it takes two to tango!  

There is a twist to the tale though, the idea of cofounding with your closest friends and family. Apparently, there’s no harm in it. Just make sure their skills are a right fit for your entrepreneurial undertaking. Also, make sure you two are bonded strongly, because the highs and lows of a startup will definitely test the strength of the bond between the two of you.

Moreover, take due time in finding the best person as your cofounder, because it’s the keystone to the whole bridge you are looking to put together. And the chances of this happening overnight are almost close to none. It’s better that you don’t rush into this.

“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” – Michael Jordan

2. Have a solid plan

So, with the most awesome idea and an even more awesome founding team, you are all set to inspire the whole world with your startup? It won’t be possible without a great plan in place.

You don’t necessarily have to write a 1000 page long document, but you must have a model for growth in addition to a pitch to play with investors (even if you have no immediate plans for raising money).

There are some serious questions to be answered before you go hitchhiking the treacherous domains of entrepreneurship. How big is the market that you are looking to target? How much of it do you think will you be able to cover surely and easily? How much time would it take? How many people would you need to hire initially? What would you be charging to lead your business to a profitable place?

It’s imperative to think about how to capitalize on any potential growth opportunities as they surface, and how you will execute the plan when it’s needed. There’s no end to the open questions you come across as a startup, but having a better understanding of the most critical aspects is the least bit you need to move forward with.


3. Run through your finances like never before

It’s almost certain to live without a paycheck for a while when you give your startup a go. So, you better take a good look at a number of things related to your finances before you kiss your day job goodbye forever.

Get a realistic estimate of how long you can survive without getting paid. One of the best ways to do so is by comparing it to when you plan to raise money (this also includes generating income from your business). In most cases, the time consumed in fundraising prolongs to 6 months or even more. So, be ready to divert some of your savings towards company expenses in the meantime.

Sounds intimidating? It can be, but there’s always a way around. Luckily, there are a few very good financing options nowadays for budding startups, like Y Combinator or TechStars. They offer help in covering early expenses while you come up with your prototype. Or, you might consider working nights and weekends on your business to minimize the time you have to survive without a salary. Also, not to mention, the age old technique of cutting back on unnecessary expenses to make some much needed savings.

“Well, I think that there’s a very thin dividing line between success and failure. And I think if you start a business without financial backing, you’re likely to go the wrong side of that dividing line.” – Richard Branson

What would be my next advice once you have assembled your dream founding team, come up with a feasible plan and sorted out your financial viability? I will suggest you halt everything else and get set go!   

Share your personal experience/opinion in regard to your startup in the comment section below.

Fueled with immense passion to make the world a better place to work, Khawar Zaman is the director of Technorian, a rapidly growing startup. Blogging is the other passion Khawar carries. For those of you looking for proven business success tips, check out my free ebook 100+ Actionable Business Growth Strategies by World Renowned Business Experts.

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How to Manage Your Startup’s Finances More Efficiently

No matter how groundbreaking your product or service, your startup could quickly be on shaky ground without proper financial management



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Running a triumphant startup requires juggling numerous responsibilities. From managing operations and coordinating with team members to developing innovative marketing strategies and nurturing relationships with clients, the to-do list seems endless. (more…)

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5 Strategic Power Moves to Successfully Build Your Empire

Transitioning from idea to empire is a journey of strategic planning, execution, and constant evolution



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The journey from a fledgling idea to a thriving empire is both exhilarating and daunting. The Startup Launchpad is not just a process but also a strategic framework that enables visionary entrepreneurs to become market leaders. This framework comprises five power moves, each a critical steppingstone in building a successful business.

These moves—Ideation, Business Plan, Online Presence, Strategic Marketing, and Launch and Growth—are the blueprint for turning aspirations into achievements. (more…)

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How to Avoid Startup Clichés and Buzzwords When Pitching Investors

Using jargon can make you sound like you’re trying to fill space instead of providing meaningful data



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Entrepreneurs frequently seek startup funding through a variety of channels. Yet, none seem as challenging as successfully pitching to experienced investors. After all, investors are pressed for time and eager for opportunities. These characteristics make it challenging to motivate them, especially if you’re bombarding them with a pitch full of jargon. (more…)

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From Idea to Empire: 5 Power Moves for Your Startup to Thrive in Today’s Market

As an entrepreneur, I’ve learned that understanding market dynamics and choosing the right business model are crucial



How to thrive in the startup market in 2024

As an entrepreneur, I’ve learned that understanding market dynamics and choosing the right business model are crucial.

A few months into the startup, I was quick to gauge why it is necessary to go beyond the nuances of operational efficiency and the art of sustaining a business amid growing competition.

Collaboration is key.

The HR and the recruiting teams work with departments to foster a culture of collaboration, but what’s indispensable to business performance is the sync between the marketing and sales teams. What we’d consider as entrepreneurs is the need to ensure seamless collaboration to predict and achieve business goals together. In turn, this will help secure long-term recurring revenue for the business.

Besides, entrepreneurs need to focus on revenue as they gear up to take their startup from $0 to $1 million. The journey is filled with critical decisions, from identifying your target customer base to choosing the right funding strategy.

So, what next?

Read on… because here are five practical, results-driven strategies that you as a founder can implement to make a mark in their industry.

#1. Embrace the Lean Methodology

What is lean methodology?

It is all about pivoting resources to create more value for customers with fewer resources. 

This principle encourages you to be more agile and allow rapid iteration based on customer feedback rather than spending years perfecting a product before it hits the market.

Want to implement it?

Here’s what you can do.

Build “Measure-Learn” Loop: What I did was develop a minimum viable product (MVP), a simple version of the product. You can do the same since it allows you to start the learning process as quickly as possible. After launching MVP, measure how customers use it and learn from their behaviors and feedback.

Here’s what I can recommend here:

  • Identify the core features that solve your customers’ primary needs and focus solely on those to develop your MVP.
  • Know the feedback channels where early users can communicate their experiences, suggestions, and complaints.
  • Analyze user behavior and feedback to make informed product development and iteration decisions.

#2. Focus on Customer Development

Let’s talk about taking our startup to the next level. 

It’s not just about getting customers – it’s about really getting to know them. We need to dive into their world, understand their struggles, and see how our product or service can make a difference in their lives. 

It’s like we’re detectives, piecing together the puzzle of our business hypothesis by actually chatting with our customers

What would you ideally do here?

Understand Customer Segments: I’d say, start dividing your target market into segments and develop a deep understanding of each segment’s demographics, behaviors, needs, and pain points. The idea is to get into their shoes and really feel what they feel.

Ensure your Product Clicks: When starting up, think of what you offer and consider whether it clicks with what our customers need. My thought was “Does my product solve their problems? Does it make their day better?” Put yourself through a tough grilling session to show customers the value proposition and ensure that the product’s promise matches what our customers are looking for.

I’d recommend the following actions here:

  • Talk to them – through surveys, interviews, or even casual chats. The goal? To gather real, raw insights about what they need and expect.
  • Use the collected data to create detailed profiles for each type of customer. This way, everyone on our team really understood we were serving. I think this should help your startup as well.
  • Try out different versions of our product with a few customer groups. It’s all about feedback here – understanding if you’re hitting the mark or if we need to pivot.

#3. Foster a Data-Driven Culture

The digital world is highly data driven since it fuels key decisions in a startup. 

I believe it’s essential for us to build a data-driven culture. This means, you’ll move from making decisions based on hunches or assumptions. Instead, the focus should be on data analytics and insights to guide our strategies and improve our outcomes.

What can you do?

Use Data Analytics Tools: You should be using these tools to gather, analyze, and interpret data related to customer behavior, market trends, and our business operations. Here, consider the adoption of pipeline forecasting that leverages AI to find patterns in marketing data. 

In turn, you’ll get areas for improvement since it can analyze historical data and predict the outcome for you to plan your.

Action Items:

  • Pinpoint key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your business objectives and ensure they are measurable and actionable.
  • Next, you can consider training your team to understand and use data analytics tools. This might involve workshops or bringing in experts to build a data-savvy workforce.
  • Once everything is in place, regularly review data reports and dashboards. This gives us a clear picture of a startup’s health and helps adjust your strategies and predict future trends.

#4. Strengthen Your Financial Acumen

A good grip on financial skills is important to steer your business towards growth and making sure it stays on track. For this, you’ll have to understand the money side of things, which helps you manage your cash flow. Think of figuring out smart investment moves and sizing up any risks that come your way.

Here’s a tip on how you can get savvy with your finances.

Maintain Rigorous Financial Discipline: I’m really focused on cultivating a strong company culture, one that truly resonates with our mission. So, I’d suggest fostering open communication and encouraging a sense of ownership and collaboration among everyone in the team.

Action Items:

  • Get to know your financial statements inside out – I’m talking about the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. These are like the vital signs for your business’s financial health
  • Use financial forecasting that helps predict your future money moves. With this, you will have a heads-up on upcoming revenues, expenses, and how much cash you’ll need. Also, research on the available financial forecasting tools that can make predictions spot-on.
  • Don’t go at it alone. Regularly touch base with financial advisors or mentors. With them by your side, you’ll have a fresh perspective on your financial strategies to ensure you’re on the right path to hit your business goals.

5. Prioritize Team Building and Leadership Development

It is crucial to focus on building a solid team and developing strong leaders. This means putting our resources into the people who are going to propel our company forward. 

What you’ll aim for here?

Creating a culture where everyone collaborates and every team member has the chance to emerge as a leader.

What I would do:

Cultivate a Strong Company Culture: This culture should mirror our mission and foster open communication. It’s important that it encourages everyone to feel a sense of ownership and work together.

Invest in Leadership and Team Development: As founders, we’ll have to make way for opportunities for teams to enhance their skills, face new challenges, and grow in their careers.

Some concrete steps that you should consider taking:

  • Begin with clearly communicating your startup’s vision, mission, and values so that every team member is on the same page.
  • Conduct regular team-building activities and workshops to boost skills and strengthen a sense of unity and collaboration.
  • How about starting a mentorship program within our organization? The more experienced team members could guide and support the growth of newer or less experienced folks.
  • Alas… encourage feedback at all levels. We should keep striving to create an environment where open, honest communication is the norm and everyone feels safe to speak up.

I know it’s one thing to get your head around these ideas and quite another to actually make them a part of your everyday business life. But that’s where the real magic happens, right? It’s all in the doing. 

As a startup founder, this means more than just being a big dreamer. How about rolling up your sleeves to be the planner who pays attention to the smallest details. Ultimately, these tips and more tactics around it will help carve a leader in you who listens and cares and the learner who’s always ready to adapt

So, as you’re either starting out or moving forward on this entrepreneurial adventure, keep these practical tips right there.

May these be your guiding lights, helping you steer through the wild and exciting world of building a startup that’s not just a dream, but a thriving reality.

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