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Are you preparing to launch your startup? If so, you’re probably spending a lot of time online looking for new ideas. But there’s another thing you need to be thinking about: the challenges most new startups struggle to deal with, and how you will prepare to mitigate them.
You can find numerous posts outlining common startup challenges, but I would like to tell you about five difficulties that are not discussed often enough. In my experience, many new businesses are surprised to find them troublesome. Let’s get started.
The foundation of any startup is its resources. Let’s say, for example, that you want to open a restaurant. Your first job is to look for a good chef because your restaurant’s success depends upon the chef’s ability to cook quality food to attract customers. You also need to think about hiring a backup chef who can replicate the same taste and quality of food during the potential absence of your head cook.
By planning in advance, you will minimize the chances of running out of resources and maintain your product quality. Do not fail to appoint a good chef after your head cook — in the startup world, this could mean properly investing in your employees, tools and HR consultants. Have trusted resources that will uphold your company’s identity; otherwise, you run the risk of losing the trust consumers have in your quality.
No matter what kind of a business you want to launch, you should be well aware of the market and current demand. It’s not always about how well you know the job or how much passion you have. If there’s no market demand for the product or service you are selling, it’s going to be difficult to grow your business. Here’s my take on how to analyze your startup idea’s viability and assess the market demand for your product or service.
Keeping an eye on employees and having regular interactions with them is of the utmost importance for startups. It’s not only necessary to understand the workflow and efficiency of each employee, but also to understand the levels of difficulties they are facing and to take necessary measures to combat them. Furthermore, working closely with employees will help you gain new perspectives, insights and suggestions that could improve your company and processes.
I know it’s difficult to monitor and check the work of each and every employee, especially when you are a startup founder because you already have a lot of tasks to cover yourself. But this is something that can’t be ignored. Shifting your work station between employees’ tables is a good idea — you can do your work while communicating and working closely with different employees in turn.
As a startup founder, let it be known that you are more than a specialized professional. You should be open to performing all different kinds of tasks as the needs arise (this can also help to reduce costs when you don’t yet have the overhead to hire specialized employees for every task). At the very least, have a basic knowledge of all types of tasks that are performed in your company so if there’s a staff shortage, you can deliver.
For example, if your project manager isn’t there and you have an important meeting with your client to discuss strategy, don’t take a step back. Instead, leverage your (hopefully) in-depth knowledge about the project and the effectiveness of the steps you are going take.
After managing so many different aspects of the business, it often feels hectic to calculate income and expenditures and set a budget every month. But this is what will give you an idea about the progress of your business and how much money you should be investing.
Write down every single payment you make (employees’ payments, cost of the equipment you have purchased in a particular month, cost of transportation for business purposes, payments made for electricity or internet, etc.), and set a target for each month.
At the end of the month, check whether or not you reached your goal, where you miscalculated and where you should be concentrating more. For example, if you find that your monthly budget is over your expectations, buy a cheaper internet service, and test that for one month.
So, along with making arrangements for your capital and finding ways to get new leads, startup founders should start preparing for these five challenges. Planning in advance makes your journey of entrepreneurship easier than what you have ideated.
March 12, 2019 at 08:45AM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs