Business is no exact science. What proves successful for your business may not yield the same result for mine. I have come to learn that it’s execution and not the idea itself that renders a business successful. While it is novel to stay true to your core beliefs and course it doesn’t hurt to snoop around and learns a thing or two from other successful entrepreneurs.
When I first started building my company, I had nothing but a dream. At the time my bank account was bare as bones. In fact were it not for payday loans I would have been homeless. One thing that really fuelled my resolve to forge on was reading the success stories of multi-billion-dollar start-ups that started from humble beginnings just like mine. In the end, the lessons I garnered from these well-to-do businesses steered my startup in the right direction.
Keep in mind the tips below are not the exact quotes from the founders. They are my extractions after conducting an in-depth research from when they were young startups till they bloomed to full-fledged businesses. Have a read.
Don’t stress over competition – Facebook.
Do you remember the once IT social platform – Myspace?
Up till 2008, they were the leading social media site.
It’s a fact of life, there will always be competition in your industry be it direct or indirect. Most businesses let the competition dictate their moves ultimately stifling their creativity. If you are forever worried about how much market share your competition and consequently tailoring your efforts to counter theirs, you then miss out on the opportunity to outdo them and ultimately be the leader.
Most of the business books in circulation agree that you need something unique to be a multi-million company. But the harsh truth is, nothing successful remains unique for long- patent or not. So the idea that you cannot compete without something totally patentable or unique is tomfoolery.
However, that’s not to say unique selling points won’t give you an edge up. It only means it’s not a must for the ultimate basis of your business model to be utterly matchless. Had Mark Zuckerberg given up after witnessing how Myspace completely dominated the social media scene, then he wouldn’t be the billionaire we know of today.
Innovate, Innovate, Innovate! – HP.
HP value innovation and that’s why they invest a whopping $3.6 billion in research and development every year. As such a big chunk of their sales is thanks to new products
In other words, if HP failed to constantly innovate and spend a pretty penny on R&D then their business would go to the crapper very easily. HP understood the consumer’s fascination with the latest gadgets and how badly they want to keep abreast with the fast changing times and used it to their advantage. Even if your field is not as fast-changing as that of the tech world, innovation still remains a key ingredient for success and growth of your startup.
Could be you have bought into the “evergreen product phenomenon” that asserts you should focus most of your efforts on products that will forever be in demand, season notwithstanding. Correct me if I’m wrong but every product has a shelf life. Take oil for instance. One can say it’s been the lifeblood of the world Economy yet renewable sources like solar hydro and wind pose a major threat to it.