Have you heard of the phrase “survival of the fittest”? Made famous by Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution; the phrase means that in natural selection, only the strong can survive. And they are the ones who have adapted to the environment well. The same is true with the world of start-ups. Just like in the theory of evolution, only the strongest can survive among start-ups. Faced with limited resources, fierce competition and the challenges of brand creation and promotion plus finding a dream team; no wonder only a few start-ups survive. So, what separates those who succeeded? What are the characteristics of a successful start-up?
Flexibility is an essential trait for entrepreneurs, more so for start-ups. Being flexible means the ability to adapt to changing environments. Yes, it is tough to allow some changes to your original idea but it is the only way to survive in this fast-changing world.
Be clear about your goal but be flexible about the process of achieving it.– Brian Tracy
2. Their Product is a Solution to a Problem
Before you start your business, ask yourself the following:
- Will the product solve an existing problem?
- Who are my target consumers? What are their existing needs?
- How can the product address the needs of my target consumer?
- What problems can my product solve that my competition cannot?
- Why should your target consumer use your product?
Every new product has to solve an existing problem in the market. That is the only way to attract your target consumers. Addressing these questions can help you develop a strategic plan to create a valuable product.
3. They Test Their Products First in a Small Market.
You have a product that you want to sell. But how do you know if people will actually buy your product? The answer is to test first. Testing the market before launch can help you evaluate your business strategy and make adjustments to your product. Start small. Mark Zuckerberg launched the site to Harvard university first, extending to other Ivy League schools before making it available to all US universities and then ultimately the world. For example, if you want to open a restaurant, try to get some feedbacks of the food that you want to sell from your family and friends before actually opening a restaurant.
Testing leads to failure, and failure leads to understanding.-Burt Rutan
4. A Dream Team
Studies have shown that one of the most important factors in the success of a start-up is the founding team. Your dream team is composed of key individuals that will work with you from the very beginning to achieve your business goals and dreams. Any successful start-up rarely is the work of just one person but has a group of people behind it. The fate of the company lies in the strength of the founding team.
Teams are incredible things. No task is too great, no accomplishment too grand, no dream too far-fetched for a team. It takes teamwork to make the dream work.– John C. Maxwell
Entrepreneurs face challenges on a daily basis. Thus, persistence is a vital ingredient to success. Entrepreneurs should be willing to overcome failures. After all, failure is part of success. Never ever give up. Be willing to take that extra mile to success. The people who succeeded are those who persevered. Walt Disney, Colonel Sanders, Elon Musk and Jack Ma are just but some examples of highly successful entrepreneurs who persisted.
Energy and persistence conquer all things.– Benjamin Franklin