While there is not a magic formula to startup success, there are certainly things you can do to make success more likely. The right education, the right qualities, and the right idea are all central to a startup that lasts.
Consider an MBA
Whether or not to get an MBA is a matter of controversy among some entrepreneurial types, but there are definitely advantages. You’ll be able to test drive some of your ideas without taking any real-world risks, and you can make great connections. You can also learn a great deal about the business world that may make the difference in your success. If you are concerned about money, keep in mind that many of the same sources of funding exist as there were for your undergraduate degree, including private student loans. You can look at various repayment plans and their advantages when you choose a lender. You may be able to save more with autopay, particularly if this means there is no risk to you of a missed payment.
Develop Your Resilience
Resilience and persistence will be key to your entrepreneurial success. It’s important to recognize that rejection is common, and just because you don’t initially get people excited about your idea or an endeavor does not go as you planned, you are not doomed to a life of failure. When you are knocked back, learn to analyze what went wrong so that you can avoid the same mistake again.
Try to be honest about where your idea may have had shortcomings, but there are also definitely situations where you pitch to people who simply don’t get what you are trying to do. Learn the causes and solutions for poor efficiency in your business and its plan, sometimes what looked good on paper does not translate to the real world and you will need resilience to be able to adjust as needed to find success overall.
Think Beyond Corporate
In many ways, the corporate mindset is ultimately a conservative one. A successful person in a large business needs to focus on maximizing profits for shareholders. As an entrepreneur, you may need to take an approach that is the antithesis of that. Successful startup founders often use language like disruption and breaking things to illustrate a very different mindset from what may be valued at some corporations. Creativity, flexibility and a high tolerance for risk will all serve you well in your bid for startup success.
Refine Your Idea
At the core of startup success is your idea, and you need to work on it until it is bulletproof. It’s very common for people to start out telling their friends and family about their idea. While this is not a bad place to start, if for no other reason than because their support and enthusiasm will be important to you, make sure that you don’t stop there. This audience is inclined to like what you put in front of them. What you need to do next is put your idea before people who are going to be a lot more critical. Writing a business plan and doing research as well as surveys and focus groups in which you talk to potential customers about what they’re looking for in a product or service like you will help you iron out a lot of potential issues.