Qualities of a Successful Startup

What makes one startup fail while another succeeds? Sometimes it’s simply having access to more money. Other times, it’s luck or timing, and sometimes, it’s hard to identify exactly what the quality is that makes some companies rise about the rest. At the same time, there are certain qualities that can increase the likelihood of a startup’s success. If you can cultivate these qualities, your own company may be more likely to thrive.

Risk Taking

In order to be a success, you have to be willing to take risks. However, you should assess the risks carefully for their potential return. It’s generally a good idea to anchor yourself before you leap, making sure that your own finances are in order in case you need to inject some cash into the business. Taking advantage of personal loans can help you pay off any existing debts at a lower interest rate and put you in a better financial position. When deciding whether to take each business risk, weigh the likelihood of failure and the cost against the reward—and don’t let the fear of failure itself impede you.

A Problem to Solve

A successful startup will solve a problem that is shared by enough people to keep your business going. It might be a problem that people don’t realize they have as this was certainly the case with social media platforms. Today, people rely on them for their social life, for keeping in touch with families and for professional visibility. Furthermore, the social media platforms that are successful today are not the first ones that arose. An interesting exercise might be to think about what problems the successful ones solved that the ones that fell into obscurity did not.

Build the Right Culture

The culture that you build is also important to your success, but be sure that the culture is in the service of the business. All too often, startups that try to mimic the campuses of successful tech companies mistake the trappings, like a great game room, for the substance. These trappings are just a means to an end, which is building a sense of unity, trust and teamwork. Hire the right employees and then find out what they need to stay productive and happy. For example, some might prefer a better work/life balance than is offered by many startups.

Good Communication

Good communication should be a cornerstone of any culture, but this is important enough that it deserves its own section. This communication needs to be not just among you and your employees but with your customers as well. Listening to customers and responding to their needs and concerns can set you apart from your competition.


Another thing that separates you from competitors is your ability to see the big picture and think ahead. Many of the most successful startups of the last 25 years began with a single focus but expanded as their success grew. Vision also means seeing opportunity where others do not, just as today’s tech giants saw the early potential in offering such services as online shopping or searching for information and moved into many other areas over time.