Every start up faces different threats to its existence and in this article we look at some of the threats that threaten a startup’s existence. As much as one can have a great idea for business in the “real world” there are occurrences which will either close your business or bring you to the brink of closure.
The common thing about start ups is getting a partner that one can work with, not everyone can be Bill Gates and Paul Allen. Not every match is made in heaven as sometimes the vision can be seen differently by both or more partners. If a start up does not have the right partner the result is two or more people going in different directions. Nothing kills a business faster than partners who are not on the same page.
Doing too much too early
Whatever business you start with, there is need to know which product is your cash cow. It’s easy to get caught up in trying to conquer the whole world at the same time, hence a start up quickly fizzles out or burns out before anything significant is achieved. It is important to note what you want to achieve from the very beginning so that you do not lose sight of the things that you want to do. Knowing your objectives from the beginning is important. Don’t diversify too much before you create your foundation of what you want to achieve.
It may sound weird but the wrong investors can kill your business. Getting an investor is every startup’s dream, it opens up doors to all the different plans that will be on course. However if the investor dominates the relationship in that start up you can end up doing things that you were not supposed to do such that the business is under pressure to not only try to make the investor happy but also to meet the goals that the start up founders would have in mind.
When you have hit a gold mine it is an exciting time as you get clients and as you keep getting interest from all different sections it seems like you have arrived. A start up should never forget that for every start up that starts there are thousands of other people with ideas as well, hence an idea that seemed like it will change the world can be overtaken by another. Keeping innovation ticking is the best for any start up to stay relevant. One has to keep improving on what they have in order to ensure that success not only come but stays for a generation or more. Suddenly sleeping and being comfortable after only a few years of operations can destroy a start up in days.
As good as business can be some countries do not have favorable terms for the existence of a startup. At the end, your hard work can be changed or affected by regulations that stifle the growth of the business. The Laws of a country maybe too far behind with regards to accommodating technological changes or opening up certain markets as they protect monopolies or “right national security interests”. In this regard a start up idea which does not fit into the environment of the legal set up can quickly meet its ceiling of growth and not go far.
As much as one can run a start up , you need employees to come in and do more as you grow. Hiring the wrong people without a defined culture or outlook on what kind of people you need will kill the business. Understanding your culture for example like Google can assist to ensure that you have the right people that you are looking for. Your vision can only fit in when the people around it fit in as well. When they do not fit it the vision will be strangled.
Doing Everything Yourself
At the start of your business you may have to be a one person or two person band, but as growth comes there is need to offload the new and old work that needs to be done. This is where it becomes tricky for most start ups. When you start something you tend to develop a connection to it. When that connection is strong it is difficult to trust another person to take care of it. When founders of startups sit on the board as chairing persons but also run the company day to day activity whilst trying to have sight of every small thing the result is almost always disastrous. Growth demands trust and offloading of duties.