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Mistakes that Kill StartUps #18: A Half Hearted Effort

By | Mistakes, Uncategorized | No Comments

If you’re starting a company, respect your decision enough to put in all your effort. Most failed companies (the companies we don’t even hear about) are the ones started by a bunch of half-hearted founders with a fleeting idea but no guts to take it forward.

Their goal? To make a lot of money. Their plan to do so? In conclusive. And their contingency strategy? Their day job.

How can you build an entire business if you still have your day job? Not that it is not possible, but it’s definitely not the most ideal of cases. These founders tend to use their day job as a safety net to fall back on. There may be a number of reasons behind this. They don’t have the guts to put it all on the line. They don’t believe in the success of their idea enough. They are hoping this idea will be a fluke success and will quit their day job only when it starts generating money of it’s own (which almost never happens)

If only we could count the number of startups that have died down because they were a bunch of guys that decided to work out of someone’s basement AFTER their day job, and eventually lost interest enough to abandon the idea. If you truly want your startup to be successful, you should direct all of your attention to it. That starts with quitting your day job, and investing all your effort into the venture.

Mistakes that Kill StartUps #13: Raising too much money

By | Fashion, Mistakes, Startup | No Comments

There is such a thing as too much money. Contrary to popular belief. This plays an especially crucial role in the world of startups. What founders fail to realize is – the more money they raise, the more the accountability.

Raising too much money can cause a founder a tremendous amount of stress. The more the funding, the more sleepless nights. Investors want to see their money go to work. They want accountability for every penny you spend. It is safe to say that, when you raise too much money, your responsibility to show positive results (and FAST) is higher. Getting funded has a tendency to paint pretty pictures in the founders head. But the reality of the matter is, the problems you face as a startup with funds are more. Your team goes from founders to employees. It’s important to remember that an employee is not as committed as the latter. Many times, productivity reduces, sales go down, and the overall pace takes a backseat.

So when you map out the amount of funding you need, look at it realistically. If you raise too much money, you will have to showcase too many returns, in too little time. You want to spend more time building your business rather than consoling your investors.

Mistakes that Kill StartUp #9: Launching too Early

By | Startup | No Comments

Launching Your StartUp too early: This may see contradicting, but it is true that launching your StartUp WITHOUT just enough preparation can be pretty damaging as well, however not as damaging as a delayed launch. Your first launch creates an impact on the early adopters of your market. It is important to impress them (to some extent) with the features.

Your product doesn’t necessarily have to do everything right away. Early adopters can be fairly reasonable that way. But as long as you have your basic features intact and working seamlessly, there will be a receptive feedback.

However, it is not right to compromise on the quality of your product in a rush o launch. You are now accessing the first bar of target customers. If they don’t like it, they might not ever come back. And this needs to be taken seriously.

Mistakes that Kill StartUps #7: Choosing the wrong Platform

By | Startup | No Comments

The previous mistake is one of major consequences. And choosing the wrong platform is one of those consequences.

Much like the lack of knowledge to hire the right programmers, choosing the right platform for your service can be nerve wrecking. The wrong platform can completely destroy the purpose of your product. A number of companies failed to know this, and saw themselves waste away in the dot-com-bubble.

Think of your platform as the foundation of your house. Would you want to build your house with mediocre talent? I didn’t think so. There are some places where you just DON’T cut corners, and hiring the right programmers and choosing the right platform is one of them.

If you do end up hiring great programmers, you can easily avoid this mistake by letting them choose. However, if you still want to keep a close eye for yourself, you could always step into a top computer science department and peek into what they use for their researches.

Mistakes that Kill StartUps #8: Delaying your Launch

By | Startup | No Comments

If you’re taking too long to launch your StartUp, there is a serious flaw in your plan. Procrastinating and pushing the date of your launch can be damaging to your resources and your reputation.

It is important to understand that there is a need to launch “SOMETHING” soon. Not because you need to get it over with, but because you need the feedback. You won’t truly fathom the depth, and seamlessness of the product or service your providing until you get actual customer reactions and then work on them.

StartUps Founders usually say that they delay the launch in order to still work on the development of the product. When it’s mostly just a delayed process of what could have been done earlier. The reason for this could be the anxiety of having to deal with the prep for the launch or even the need for perfection – both of which are highly irrational. Don’t be an extremist about perfection and eliminate the fear of being rejected. As far as your preparations go – there’s going to be a ton of work, no matter how much time you take to delay it.