Startup success is not by accident or luck as some may want you to believe.
As Oscar Wilde famously puts it; Success is a science; if you have the Conditions, you get the results.
As an entrepreneur or business, you need to strategically position yourself and align your entrepreneurial antennas to know the WHAT, WHEN AND HOWs of business.
The research under perspective here is that of investor and fund manager, Bill Gross who highlighted the single biggest reason why startups succeed on a TED Talk show – in fact, I must say he did hit the nail right on the head.
He pointed out the following factors (conditions) that matter most for startups to succeed;
- Business model
- Timing (the single Biggest Success Factor of them all)
I personally call these the ‘lab conditions’ for the entrepreneur’s work.
These factors/conditions were also graded in terms of their importance on the path of getting good results and that is what I will be expatiating on in the succeeding paragraphs.
TIMING CONDITION – 42%
In the words of Martin Luther King Jnr, “time is always right to do what is right. How early or late you are to execute an idea, make a product or service, and even when to scale in business determines to a large extent the success or failure of that business decision.
From Gross’ presentation, I realized entrepreneurs don’t really know WHEN to start WHAT and sometimes the HOWs.
They sometimes get blinded by the fancy product or service they’re bringing onboard without actually identifying the market for the product or service under production. As an entrepreneur, watching out for the time to start a business or launch a product is very crucial
- Is it the right time
- Is it too early because there is no need for the the product or service you’re developing
- Is it too late because what you want to produce is already in the market and you might not be able to compete?
Be scientific about your research and not be in self-denials of your findings.
TIMING accounts for the single biggest reason why startups succeed
TEAM AND EXECUTION CONDITION – 32%
Team was the next biggest factor to timing as Bill Gross graded it 32%.
Startups succeed if the founding team work together with that burning passion with which they used in starting the company.
The importance of team efforts in the success of a startup cannot be underestimated because depending on the kind of startup you need to delegate some duties ( a division of labour). In a team, ideas flourish as they brainstorm and develop ideas and members tend to complement (support) one another which leads to more efficiency.
IDEA / TRUTH OUTLIER FACTOR – 28%
Most times, people are so fascinated by their idea to the extent that they really don’t do their due diligence before execution. Sometimes in an attempt to do some research on the feasibility, they only end up engaging in confirmation biases where they think they’re ready to go.
Bill Gross cherished ideas so much and had to name his group of companies “Idealab”.
BUSINESS MODEL – 24%
A business model is also called the plan of the business; this plan entails what the startup wants to produce, how to produce, how to market what has been produced and projected revenues to rake in.
This is the part where my youth president (Samuel. Gyampoh) will always insist every entrepreneur puts on paper before starting to execute.
While I do agree to some extent because you need that to guide your path to generating customer revenues as Bill Gross will put it, It is more or less a manual or user’s guide although at some point I think a startup’s business model can change as they stumble on with some “ahuhh reactions” and facts about the market (customers reaction to their product or service).
The Business Model was graded 24% being fourth on the list of factors.
FUNDING CONDITION – 14%
Sometimes the issue of funding is overrated as most collapsed companies or startups blame their demise on lack of funding.
This factor (condition) that cause startups to succeed was actually rated last with 14%. According to B. Gross, “ if you’re underfunded at first but you’re gaining traction, especially in today’s age, it’s very, very easy to get intense funding,”. I agree
THE WAY FORWARD WHEN IT COMES TO TIMING
Entrepreneurs really have a problem determining the appropriate time to start a certain business (what time is too early or too late), I guess you can name some startup companies in Ghana that are still thriving because they observed these conditions and others that are long dead and gone because they never did consider this science of entrepreneurship
According to American Evangelist and Author, TL Osborne, “
If you really want to be successful, identify a problem and reach out to solve it”. You can tell if your timing is right by judging from the product-market fit.
Where the ordinary mind sees problems, the entrepreneur sees business opportunities. You need to develop a product or service that actually solves a problem and do your due diligence to know how consumers will react to what you’re bringing to the market.
If you really want results, get these conditions right before you roll up your sleeves and hit the ground running (startup)