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One Simple Business Strategy That Will Save Your Startup From Failure

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When you are feverishly building your startup, there are 1 million things that must be done. And if just one of those million things is off by just a fraction of a millimeter — failure. As an entrepreneur, you are frequently courting failure, and because of the ever-present chaos, you are trying to do everything yourself. Why, because no one can do the job better than you.

But you would be epically wrong. It’s wrong of you to assume that you have the skill set to manage all the moving parts in a startup. It’s not your responsibility to work in your company, it’s your duty to work on your business. That is a difficult pill to swallow when you are first growing your startup.

The Nightmare of Not Outsourcing

Jack Canfield, one of the authors of, “The Power of Focus,” shares:

”As the foundation is built, people and systems are put in place to create stability. Gradually the entrepreneur becomes more involved in day-to-day administrative duties. Paperwork increases and what started out as an exciting venture becomes a daily routine, with much more time spent putting out fires, handling people problems, tax challenges, and monthly cash flow.”

Does that sound eerily familiar to you? Is that why you started a business, to manage human resource issues? Your company does not need you to handle the day-to-day. What your business needs is your consistent focus on the core competencies that are giving birth to the products that give you a unique selling proposition and add value to your customers.

Yes, HR issues still needs to be managed, tax challenges need to be resolved and fires need to be put out, but if not by you then who? Let others maintain those parts of the business. Outsource everything that does not support your company’s core competency. Why because your success is based on focusing on a minimal number of high leverage activities.

“If you deprive yourself of outsourcing and your competitors do not, you’re putting yourself out of business.” – Lee Kuan Yew

Find Bliss in Contracting (work) to Others

But before you rush to hire a consultant or a service provider you must ask yourself two important questions:

  1. Do you trust the company that is going to manage the tasks that you are outsourcing?
  2. Will outsourcing allow you to streamline the operations of your business?

If the answer is “yes” to both questions, then it’s time to outsource that function. You first start by engaging your outsourcing efforts broadly:

  • Outsourcing human resources
  • Engaging offshore developers
  • Leveraging a virtual phone system

So how do you begin to understand what can be outsourced and what is the brains of the operation? Simple, make a visual map of everything that must happen in your business to produce the sale, direct and indirect. Then ask yourself: what are the unique processes that are designed to add value to the customer that only your startup can provide?

“An organization’s ability to learn, and translate that learning into action rapidly, is the ultimate competitive advantage” – John Carmack

Once you can separate what is necessary, what does not fit within that framework must be outsourced. Once you can focus on your core competencies what you have left are the minimal number of activities that you can leverage to compete in the marketplace.

What strategy would you give for startup success? Please leave your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

Ramon B. Nuez Jr. studies leadership. Ramon interviews leaders across a broad range of disciplines such as CEOs, entrepreneurs, and founders — to uncover what makes them exceptional leaders. Ramon writes about leadership in world famous blogs like the Huffington Post,  Addicted2Success, Lifehack, and Business2Community. He has also been an editor for the World Wide Web Foundation and Crowdsourcing Week. Ramon is working on self-publishing his first book; tentatively titled “The Growth Journal | a notebook for living with impact.” Ramon is endlessly conducting research on entrepreneurship, skill acquisition, productivity, behavioral psychology and leverages the investigation to help high achievers become so valuable that they can’t be ignored. Visit him online at www.ramonbnuezjr.com.

Startups

5 Women Who Revolutionized Tech and Made Millions

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There are many female entrepreneurs in today’s world revolutionizing the tech industry and owning their own unique craft. Before, technology and business was seen as a more male-dominanted industry that women rarely crossed into. That’s no longer the case. (more…)

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The Truth About Marketing Every First Time Founder Should Know

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While starting your own business is an exhilarating experience, many start-up founders struggle with successful marketing more than any other area of business. So if you’re thinking about starting a business, here are some of the key things you need to know about marketing before you take the plunge. (more…)

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Lessons I Have Learned About Scaling a Business as a Startup Founder

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When I set out to start my own business three years ago, I never imagined bright lights and private jets to New York or Shanghai for business meetings. Good thing I didn’t because it is nothing like that at all. It was a struggle from day one and I had to embrace the grind to grow. (more…)

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5 Hacks to Improve Your Writing Skills in English for ESL Learners

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Studying in college is hard for everyone, but ESL learners arguably suffer the most. Moving to a foreign country, learning a new language, and keeping pace with the rest of the class may seem like an unbearable burden. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed, but you have to pull through and not give up. 

In moments like this, it’s always a good idea to seek help. Whether you go to WriteMyPaper to order an essay or just talk to a friend, admitting vulnerability is an important step towards improvement. In this article, you will find some tips on how to get better at essay writing, even if English is not your native language.

 

Control Your Environment

Improving your language skills is all about constant practice. Living in an English-speaking community is the first thing you should do to start your practice. It might be tempting to surround yourself with people who already speak a familiar language. However, this way, you won’t be practicing English on a daily basis.

You need to make those lessons almost intuitive in a way that you don’t have to do anything to learn the language. If you live in an English-speaking community, for example, if your roommate speaks English, you will have to practice the language, whether you want it or not.

Still, make sure you don’t take it too far. Taking care of yourself is still as important as ever. Feeling like an alien for the sake of education is not worth it. Remember to keep in touch with your friends and family, talk to them as often as necessary.

 

Practice Constantly

Practicing language is not just about doing your homework. You can make practicing English a normal part of your daily routine by watching TV, listening to music, and reading books in this language. 

Yet, this is a bit tricky. When being surrounded by white noise, people tend to learn not to notice it. You need to ensure this doesn’t happen. As you watch movies or read books, maintain your attention on what you’re doing. If you hear or see a word that you don’t understand – translate it and write it down. Be mindful and remember what you’re doing this for.

 

Writing Is The Answer

If you want to specifically learn to write, you need to do one thing, and that is to write. Continuous practice will help you understand what mistakes you often make and, in time, eliminate them. Focus on your goal, and don’t get discouraged when something’s not working. After all, even Rome wasn’t built in a day!

Get a journal and write in it daily. Pick a new topic every time and note everything you can think of. It’s also important that you write by hand, a spelling checker in your computer is tempting, but it will not help you remember how to spell words correctly. 

Besides, journaling as a habit has multiple health benefits, and it can be therapeutic. It can help you get in touch with yourself and process your emotions better.

 

Learn In a Group

It’s proven that learning in a group is more efficient due to the sense of competition. Find a bunch of like-minded people who want to study with you or join an already existing one, like a speaking club.

The benefit of such activities is that you get all these people from entirely different backgrounds who are all good at various things. This will help you exchange experiences, which is impossible if you’re alone.

Schedule regular meetings, come up with topics to discuss and activities to do. You could watch videos or movies together, or talk about common things. Having assignments like describing an event can also be beneficial for the entire group. This way, while one person speaks, the rest think about how they would say the same things differently. 

This will help you feel more confident in your skills and, consequently, speak and write better.

 

Expose Yourself

The most important thing about learning a language is not to be afraid of making mistakes. It’s inevitable; you just have to take it as a natural part of a learning process. 

A child that is learning how to walk doesn’t give up after falling once, and you shouldn’t either. It’s most likely that your friends understand that you’re just learning a language, and they won’t laugh at you for misusing a word or a few. 

Get over that fear of error and make as many mistakes as it will take. Treat it lightly, and don’t beat yourself up for it. On the other hand, try to attend as many events as you can that will expose you to the foreign language. Not only will it boost your English skills, but also improve your social confidence!

 

Wrapping Up

Learning a language is hard; there’s no arguing about that. However, it’s going to get easier with time. Take every hard thing that life throws at you and turn it into a lesson. 

Watch your favorite movies in English, converse with native speakers, and you’ll see the improvement very soon!

Remember to be patient about it. Don’t give up, and don’t beat yourself up over something that you have so little control of. Good luck!

 

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