There are a few beliefs that are so engraved in the startup culture that a few people who are starting out dare to disagree with them. Some of those beliefs are you need to have a co-founder to be successful, or you must open a Delaware C-Corp to start your business, quitting your job and focusing full time on your idea, and many more that we will examine in our journey of creating a single founder startup community.
There are three things that are highly likely to kill a new startup, running out of money, co-founder disagreements, and not finding the right market fit. …
I am often asked, what is the difference between starting a startup and starting a small business?
The difference is the same as being the first minute to run a mile in under four minutes and being the hundred’s person to run a mile in under four minutes.
Let me expand on it since there are so many lessons we can learn from this comparison.
When one starts a business, there is a model he or she can imitate. Someone has already done what they want to do with a slight variation of the idea.
One can predict the costs and forecast potential returns. There is a general consumer sentiment about the idea that can be measured. …
The first vital metric is Life-Time Value (LTV) of the customer, also referred to as Customer Lifetime Value (CLV or often CLTV), or Lifetime Customer Value (LCV). While calculating the future value of the customer can get complicated, we will keep it simple. All we will mean by Customer Lifetime Value is the total monetary value each customer brings to the business over the lifespan of the company.
Successful businesses realize that the total Customer Lifetime Value goes way beyond a transactional relationship.
Even if we look at three completely different companies such as Coca-Cola, Tesla Motors, and Uber, each of these businesses makes money from building a relationship with their customers and not just selling them once. …
Today, we are going to take a look at three different business models. The first one is quite straightforward, investing in income-generating real estate. The second one is building a traditional business. The third one is building high-tech startups. What makes all three of them so different from each other? Let’s take a look.
When it comes to real estate investing, most of the elements are well known and can be projected with a reasonable degree of accuracy. There are still risks, but those risks are easier to estimate and prepare for compared to other business models.
The most significant indicator of your success is your ability to acquire the properties at a discounted price compared to the value. If you purchase $1,000,000 property for $700,000, you will have enough room for a margin of error to get all the professional help you need to make the investment profitable. …
In our early teenage years, and maybe even earlier, we all had dreams of whom we will become, the house we will live in, the family we will have, the car we will drive, the vacations we will go on, and so much more. Yet, as we started getting older, we were taught to be more “realistic,” we were taught that we don’t have time for our dreams. I want to tell you today that you do!
You don’t have to believe me if you follow the suggestions in this article, you will see for yourself that you will not only have time for your dreams and goals, but you even have time for yourself. What do I mean by that? …
You have to start with changing your mindset, the road to success will be much longer and a lot more painful than you envision. The journey will force you to do more self-improvement than you have ever done in your life. You will have to become a leader, not a boss. You will have to become a storyteller and a public speaker, inspiring your employees, customers, and investors to believe in the mission and in you, way before the product is perfect. You will have to become resourceful; you will have very little money and a small team to compete with the industry’s giants. You will have to become a psychologist to understand your customers and your employees’ needs even when they don’t. You will need to take on a hundred different roles that you are not prepared for. The most challenging part of being a startup founder is a feeling of complete loneliness, yes you might be surrounded by people, and you might even have co-founders, but at the end of the day you will be responsible for every hard decision, and you will be blamed for every failure no matter who is responsible for it. Being a founder will be a mental and physical challenge as you will put in more hours than everybody else and will be emotionally and physically drained for years. …
There are so many incredibly good books, but there are some that every new and seasoned entrepreneur should read. Many of them were the talk in Silicon Valley, others were written by elite university professors, but all of them will make you a better entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurs often consider their idea to be so unique that they believe that they do NOT have competition, or they underestimate their competition.
The lack of research often hurts entrepreneurs when they try to fundraise or market their company.
“Competition is For Losers” — Peter Thiel (Billionaire Founder of PayPal, Palantir, Founders Fund, and an early investor in Facebook)
How can both ideas co-exist? Do startups have competition and don’t have competition at the same time? …
Thank you for reading my series of articles on starting your entrepreneurship journey as a single founder. While these articles can benefit any startup founder, entrepreneur, or even early-stage startup employees, I wanted to create a community and resources for founders who feel overwhelmed and could use some advice and insights from more experienced founders that went through all the mistakes.
In the first article, we have discussed:
- Starting as soon as possible
- Things that might kill your startup
- Working 80+ hours a week
- Quick iterations
- Falling in love with your customer’s problems
- Not falling in love with your product ideas
- Technical expertise requirements
- The value of a cup of coffee
- Basics of customer development
- Competitor research
- The burn rate and the runway
- Not making your friends your co-founders
- How to fund your startups without getting in…
Many founders spend a lot of their time looking for investors to fund their startup ideas while missing out on other resources available to them.
Startups have an enormous advantage over the traditional small businesses; the possibility of scaling fast makes them attractive target customers for more prominent corporations.
Many corporations are willing to provide early-stage startups resources they need to succeed with the expectation that once a startup scales, the corporation will benefit by being the preferred vendor going forward. There are also several grants and financial awards that startups can qualify.
Let’s go through some of the resources that are available at the time of this article’s writing. Please keep in mind that available resources do not mean guaranteed resources. You have to sell vendors the idea of your startup almost the same way you sell that idea to the investors. …