When we set out on any journey, we’re certain of the ‘Destination’ and the ‘Route’ we are going to take. We are aware of the stops along the way and whether or not there will be anything impeding our journey. However, we can’t say the same, when we embark on the entrepreneurial journey. An entrepreneur may begin their journey with another,and yet may end up taking a totally different route filled with differing levels of challenge. In the end, for a startup it comes down to luck and the timing. However, that doesn’t stop us from playing it safe to increase the chances of success.
Below are some of the questions which an Entrepreneur should ask himself, before he sails out to set a mark on the world with his startup idea.
1: Is your business idea actually solving a customer’s pain point?
Let’s look at what constitutes a Startup:
A Startup is a company that is in the first stage of its operations. These companies are often initially bankrolled by their entrepreneurial founders, as they attempt to capitalize on developing a product or service for which they believe there is a demand.
As a corollary of the above statement, if your product is not addressing the customer’s pain point or if it is, and there is very little demand for it, then you may want to get back to the drawing board with the idea. Sometimes, the entrepreneurs beat themselves up working on an idea that is not generating any traction or isn’t able to arouse customers interest.
You have to be doubly certain that the target customer is in need for your product. This may not be something that the market can tell you upfront. However, a well-conducted research could help you measure the feasibility of your product.
2: Are you willing to sacrifice your comfort zone for the good of your startup?
Working in a startup means sleepless nights and extended working hours. Are you ready to give that up to work dedicatedly on your idea? An an entrepreneur, your work will push you to the boundary, or worse, out of the comfort zone you are so used to live in. Are you willing to go that extra mile? If the answer to above questions is yes, then you have right mindset to make it big in the entrepreneurial world. You are the CEO or the co-founder of the company, and at the same time, you are sales and marketing guy, the office boy and whatever role you need to take up to run your startup lean.
3: Does your business model have the potential to generate recurring revenue?
We are not talking about the flashes in the pan here. Your startup’s business model should be capable of generating predictable revenue. This is most important part of your journey & probably one of the biggest reasons why you’re doing this in the first place. You have got to ask yourself: Would the customer buy this product? If so, does your product have the X factor to keep the customers coming back?
4: Do you have it in you, Can you sell yourself?
In any business, you are selling yourself as much as you are selling your product or service. You must carry the confidence to make people believe in you. If you’re trying to sell your services to an investor or a big client, you’d better be ready to answer any questions about your product or industry. First impressions are everything in business.
If the following is you mindset: I can’t sell because I’m not cut out for it or I’m a technical guy. Then you may want to rethink your life goal to be an entrepreneur or learn and develop the require skills.
5: The biggest question is: Are you ready to fail?
90% of the startups fail. There is a very high chance that you may be within the larger portion of the pie. However, it doesn’t decide your entrepreneurial career. What decides that you go on to raise a successful startup is your resilience. Courage to look failure in the eye and keep trying supplements that immensely.
Your idea may not work the first time, if we go by the percentage of successful startups. However, you need to have the conviction to persevere in the face of failure and keep going on and pivoting.
Remember the mantra: Build, measure, repeat, until the goal is reached.