Top 15 Blogs all Startup Managers should be Reading
Fifteen blogs have been identified that must be part of the reading list for all startup managers. One of them is Work Awesome which is an excellent source for ways to improve office productivity and workplace guidelines. Joel.is is named after the writer himself, who shares his personal learnings during his own entrepreneurial career. Open View Labs is particularly a rich resource in the HR section especially as it deals with the various intricacies of talent recruitment. The next three such blogs on the list are Intercom, Startup Professionals Musings and Fresh books. Mixergy is a video based blogging site which provides content in the form of podcasts. Clarity.fm is a source where business experts provide business consulting to those who put up such queries. Girls in Tech is a particularly rich resource for women working in the field of technology. Next up on the list is Coelevate but instead of being a source for blogs, it actually has detailed essays on customer acquisition and business growth strategies. Tech crunch, Startup Management and Successful Startup 101 are the next three entries on the list. The penultimate one is 500 Startups which is renowned due to the fact that it is contributed by a group of people who have actually invested in more than five hundred startups. Closing off the list is Startup Nation which has detailed research backed content on operations, analytics, motivation and organizational culture.
Drastically increase your Startup’s chances for Success by Owning a Niche
While there are a plethora of startups now operational, it is a well known fact that only a few of them will really survive. A further few will go on to become unicorns such as Snap or Dropbox. In order to be one of them, the best approach is to offer the audience something unique which isn’t otherwise available. To do that the startup must try solving any specific problem. While it is advisable to diversify the risks, each startup must identify at least one client that is well funded and can pay well during the initial struggles. Another business innovation could be geographical by targeting any market that is underserved. An industry could be located which at present is cut off from the world of technology. Since technology will eventually play a part in all sectors, this could be time to enter one where it hasn’t made much headway so far. Most importantly no startup must blindly chase Venture Capital funds. The moment that takes place, a huge chunk of company freedom goes away from the founders.
How Morale changes as a Startup Grows
A lot of startups begin on a high note with a small, close-knit team working round the clock towards achieving some common goals. At the initial stage, this small team needs to execute all the tasks, but if the startup grows at a fast pace, eventually the work portfolio gets so diversified that it becomes impossible to multi-task to such an extent. Also a research found out that during the initial few years, if the growth is high, then a certain cultural chasm develops during years three and four. This same chasm if dealt with properly comes back to a better shape by the sixth year, though the happiness index never reaches the initial levels. On the other hand, startups that grow slower at more steady pace, tend to see fewer problems. This is because at such places, a working culture has been put in place and the talent recruitment done accordingly. In the high growth startups, the founders get very little time to bed in the important things as they are busy executing the urgent ones. At such places, this cultural gap can lead to severe voluntary attrition which hit startups high as they do not have a vast pool of spare talent. Thus founders must during the growth years, make sure to implement a proper organizational culture for long term sustainability.
Why you should treat Fundraising for your Startup like a Sales Process
A lot of aspiring entrepreneurs feel disappointed when they do not get adequate funding for their idea. Yet instead of treating fundraising as a one off, starters must see it as a constantly evolving sales process. It is a long, tedious process, beginning well before the actual first few meetings. There are three ways in which startup ideas must be funneled through a sales resembling process. Before the actual initial project pitch, the entrepreneur must be clear about the target audience. The first people targeted for funding must be angel investors, High Net Individuals, friends or family. Only at a later stage, once the brand has been established to some extent and the founder is willing to divest some control, can venture capitalists be involved. Before approaching venture capitalists though, a thorough investigation of their profiles must be done as that will help in developing lasting relationships beyond the funding itself. Their social media handles such as on Facebook, LinkedIn and Salesforce must be studied to gauge authentic business intelligence on the people concerned. Finally, like any sales persons the principle of Always Be Closing (ABC) must be applied to every investor meeting. A thorough analysis must be made prior to the meeting of aspects such as what kind of return they would be seeking, what formalities required, are there existing investments that come into conflict with this proposal and what would be their major miss if they decide to go against funding this project.