Fire bad customers – some of them just won’t be worth keeping. Either they pay too little and want too much or they take up too much of your time. You can try to change your business model and make more money from these customers if possible. But sometimes it is easier to just let them go and focus on customers who are more profitable. Make sure you understand the profiles of your customers and...
I am sometimes approached by people thinking about starting a business or going out on their own. Unfortunately some of these folks don’t seem to have the right stuff. So how do you tell – are you an entrepreneur? There are checklists on websites and probably personality tests you can take but I can only speak to my own experiences. Some characteristics seem to work and others don’t.
Many entrepreneurs struggle with whether to avoid co-founders in their startup or if the extra help would be worthwhile. They worry about the type of person, the split of equity, long term plans, separating responsibilities, etc.
I was at a startup incubator event a few weeks ago. We saw live pitches by six startups. Chatting to folks afterwards and the question came up – how do you determine which startups will be successful? Obviously this is a difficult question – if we could easily determine the answer then we could all make millions! Instead it seems like mostly black magic. But there must be some startup success...
A friend reminded me of this question on a call yesterday. So, you are trying to position your startup and want to figure out if it is better to have a few high paying customers or lots of low paying customers. As with most things, it depends. There are advantages and disadvantages to both approaches. I tend to prefer lots of low paying customers but that is just my preferred style.
So you have come across your first RFP as a startup … (Request for Proposal in case you are wondering). Maybe a customer sent it to you after some Google searches or perhaps one of your new sales guys stumbled upon it. Here is a quick lowdown of what you need to know about RFPs for a startup…
Many startups struggle with how to differentiate themselves from their competition. They spend energy trying to come up with unique features that their competitors don’t offer. This is typically the wrong approach. Even if they do implement feature XYZ that their competitor doesn’t offer – how long will it take that competitor to take notice and implement XYZ in their product too? Features can...
This will sound cold and heartless but focus on revenue – a startup needs revenue to survive and grow. This should be your primary focus. If you are making money, then you are probably solving a problem that people are prepared to pay money for and probably doing something right. Follow that path, listen to their needs, adapt your approach, grow and learn.
Startup time management is a problem that comes up a lot. There is so much to do and it is hard to prioritize. There are typically new tasks popping up everyday, fires to put out and then high priority items that are becoming more urgent with each passing day. It begins to look like lower priority items will just never get done.
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