Every Startup Almost Inevitably Sinks. If we do a detailed analysis we find that there are always a few common reasons which directly point toward why many of the startups fail. So, let us go through details of why startups fail and what they can do to achieve success in their endeavors.
Is it true that every startup almost inevitably sinks?
According to statistics provided by Harvard Business School, almost 75% of all startups backed by venture capital usually fail. Similarly, in another study it was found that more than 50% of US startup firms fail after 5 years and about 70% after first ten years. The studies concluded that main reasons for such failure are usually:
- Lack of commitment, motivation and passion
- Lack of focus
- Lack of good mentorship
- Getting advice from wrong mentors
- Attempts to raise a lot of money too quickly
- Lack of domain related as well as general business knowledge
- Presence of over price which means entrepreneur is not willing to listen to advice
These issues directly point towards lack of business knowledge and problems in decision making that entrepreneurs face. The problems also tell us failure in leadership is also one of the primary reasons why startups fail to achieve success.
In addition to it, the leadership is not able to create a strong team and develop a business model that will work successfully. Even when the business is running out of money, there are some factors which are behind such shortage of money.
Secrets of Success
Many studies have been performed to analyze how any startup achieves success while every startup almost inevitably sinks. In one of the studies by Harvard Business School, it was found that many of the serial entrepreneurs who have achieved success with their earlier endeavors have greater chances of achieving success in their new ventures. However, this is part of the answer since we are more interested in understanding how an entrepreneur can achieve success even when he is launching a startup business for the first time in his or her life. We want to know more about startup success stories.
Presence of Indicators
Let us look at some indicators, which when present help a startup business succeed.
- Successful entrepreneurs are usually motivated by impact, which results in greater commitment and passion.
- They are committed to stick to a course as well as their chosen path.
- Successful startup companies are willing to adjust their strategy however, they do not do so on a constant basis.
- They also have persistence and patience so that they can adjust to timing mismatch that is commonly seen between what really happens and what our expectations are.
- Successful entrepreneurs have the willingness to learn, listen and most importantly observe others.
- They have the capacity and capability to develop mentoring relationships that succeed.
- Entrepreneurs succeeding in their endeavors are good leaders and have excellent business knowledge, whether it relates to domain specific or general knowledge.
- They are also expert at raising only enough during their funding endeavors which will help them meet their next block of key milestones (which is commonly known as principle of lean startup).
- These people are also able to achieve a perfect balance between business and technical knowledge as well as have required technical expertise to make product development successful.
So, how some startups break the jinx that every startup almost inevitably sinks?
#1 – Having a Startup Business Plan: First thing that successful startup companies do in comparison to those who failed is that they are committed to a specific plan. Moreover, these entrepreneurs also ensure that there are no more than 1 or 2 pivots during course of their business.
#2 – Creating a Successful Pivot: A successful pivot often results in a change in direction the business is moving in and causes material change with respect to company’s market and product strategy. Furthermore, the change should be such that it results in modification of associated strategies as well as resource allocation.
#3 – Right Passion: Additionally, successful startup companies have the passion to achieve their goals and believe that they are doing the right thing, plus they are competitive and do not want to lose.
#4 – Listening to Mentors and Having Domain Knowledge: Few of the other things that help them succeed are selection of right mentors and domain knowledge. By having a knowledgeable mentor by your side and focusing on his or her advice, it is quite likely that an entrepreneur would be able to take better business decisions. The second important thing is that the entrepreneur should also have domain specific knowledge to implement their business plans in right manner.
Secret Recipe to Success – A Mix of Technical Knowledge and Business Acumen
However, it does not mean that technical founders who do not have domain specific knowledge will not be able to make their endeavor successful.