We all live in a magical time, an era of innovation, in the age of unicorns. Everyone who reads tech news at least once in a while can’t help but get inspired by startup success stories. In reality, though, it turns out that building a startup that will last is not as easy as it may seem, and stories of failure are much more common than journalists lead you to believe.
Instead of focusing on the sad side of entrepreneurship, let’s think of what can be done to prevent those failures. What can startup owners do to make their journey easier and more enjoyable? Is there someone to help them survive, concentrate on their goals, and succeed?
OUTSOURCING: If we think about the long-term perspective for businesses, scarcity of the resources means that you have to prioritize. This is particularly relevant to IT-related tasks. Another important point is that newborn companies often don’t have enough hands to solve their challenging tasks effectively. A startup may have a brilliant idea, and its CEO may be very ambitious, but even the most talented specialist cannot build a company alone. The third problem follows from the fact that startup projects are often based on innovative business ideas. This often means a lack of know-how both in the development team and in the local market in general.
STARTING FAST: you may have the most innovative idea and be very passionate about bringing it to life. Yet, if you don’t get your product to market quickly, you’ve lost the game.
- If you deliver your product quickly, it gives you a big advantage over your competitors.
- Fast Time-To-Market (TTM) serves as proof of the reliability of your startup for angels and venture funds (the quicker you deliver your product to the market, the more chances you have to beat your rivals and return money to investors).
- And finally, fast TTM is of particular importance for startups entering some “hype industry” in which each day of delay can be your last day in the market.
SAVING COSTS: Every penny counts, and this is especially relevant for a startup. Even if a startup is lucky enough to raise a big round of venture capital at the beginning of its journey, it should spend wisely. Sticking to reasonable budgets and reducing startup costs should always be one of the main priorities. At the same time, a startup can’t sacrifice the quality of its product as it can lose the game from the start. Therefore, the only viable option for startups is to develop a cost-effective approach in their work and pay only for what they really need.
HIRING TOP-NOTCH SPECIALISTS: No matter how passionate young entrepreneurs are and how much they want to do everything by themselves — their time and skill set is limited. Startup founders may be businessmen in nature, but this doesn’t make them programmers, designers, or project managers. They can’t write any code or create a polished visual concept.
BEING FLEXIBLE: What defines a real startup is their flexibility, agility, and the ability to scale an innovative business model confidently. Being a startup means maintaining a healthy workflow in stressful phases. In other words, startups should embrace flexibility, so they can pivot when necessary, without things falling apart.
No matter how awful those challenges may look like, startups have good chances to tackle them successfully. The answer to many problems of a young entrepreneur is called outsourcing. We teamed up with Pocket, Lifefy, serenitas and many others in the early stages of their startup life and rocketed them to a much safer position.
There is a model where you can have the cake and eat it too. Hiring a tech agency that can be that tech partner, providing the much needed staff members, bringing external and extensive expertise while saving costs. The last part can be accomplished via an equity and cash engagement, which will attain two key objectives:
- Keeping the costs down and most importantly,
- Gain a partner involved in the growth of the company.
By adding a part of equity to the deal, the tech agency will look after the company as an owner, since growth in the startup means growth in their investment. And you will benefit from the expertise, the rich pool of talent and the knowledge earned by the agency with their other engagements.
In the next part of this article we will touch on the different ways this partnership can be leveraged for maximum value.