Given the rapid success often achieved by lean, innovative startups, the process of joining such crowd often seems easier than it is in reality. Ideas and business model aside, many of the issues associated with starting and managing a young startup are to do with budget and resource management.
Part of the reason for this is that many investment rounds are not always strong enough to back the initial progress of a company that’s likely to spend initially more money than it’s making, and it’s no surprise that 90% of today’s startups end up failing.
So to keep your head above water it’s essential to optimise spend from day one and avoid having to pay an endless list of monthly bills.
Remember that most of the software you’ll need to rely on will be paid for, and that you’ll need to pick the right software – ie software that does exactly what you’re paying for – for the lowest price possible. Cloud services are generally agile and very affordable for startups, with some of them offering different plans depending on frequency and volume of data usage.
Ideally, you will want to pay for programmes that offers more than one task at once. For instance you’ll be looking for payroll software which allows you to manage time and schedules as well as keep your HR records up to date and easily accessible. Or you’ll be looking for project management tools which also offer direct ways of communicating with the team or exchanging vital files without having to send more emails.
For what concerns the recruitment process, you shouldn’t overspend on staff soon after the first round of investment or you’ll find it hard to scale down if you’re going through a turbulent period. Just hire as soon as the need for a specific figure becomes evident, and only when you’re sure he/she will be the best candidate to solve some of the issues the company is facing.
You should also make sure that team members don’t end up working alone on vital projects: an analyst will always need an operational counterpart, for instance a developer or marketing executive, depending on the area of business. Likewise, execs will need to be able to make bold and innovative decisions without always having to rely on the guidance of often busy managers.
All of our tips will sure be useful as a starting point, but we’re only about scratching the surface: the startup world is an incredibly complex and unpredictable one.
If you have a great business model and would like to keep exploring the ways to succeed world of lean startups our best advice is to follow the priceless advice of Eric Ries, the most authoritative voice in a very unique business environment.