Do you really know why startups kick ass?

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Startups are the new darlings of job seekers, investors and markets. What makes them different? To start with, why are they capable of achieving success in an ever growing competitive world?

They collaborate and work as a team

Compared to traditional companies, this may be the one feature that makes startups different. People – and departments – talk to each other, work together, in one word, collaborate.

In a traditional model, for example, the technical guys will show disdain for the marketing guys (who spend the money they are “creating”). And vice versa (marketers unhappy to work with people who can not explain what they are doing with “real words” … ).

As bad a joke as it sounds this is business as usual in too many companies. And something startups do not have to cope with. They are built on the actual principle of collaboration and sharing. Even with extended teams, even with staff dispersed all other the world. Remote work is eating the world and does not impair quality.

They fail and rise again

Startups are based on people, often a small number. And for a noticeable amount of them often built on a business model still to be validated. A recipe for failure ?

Maybe. But not necessarily since these companies also know they may be wrong or could fail and that is part of their DNA. It also means that with agile structures and agile minds, they are ready to pivot. They can  completely turn around their whole business fast enough to avoid failure. Or rise from that crash with an other product/business/venture  already on the launchpad.

Failure is part of the startup equation. So are plan B, C, D and so on. And feel free to add numbers, invent letters or use visuals to name all the other backup plans. Plan to succeed!

Toughen Up Startups ! - Mr T - Samuel Pavin Group

They are eager to succeed

With the risk of failure comes great will to succeed. A startup is a business run by a commando team. All involved are striving towards this one goal of making the company a success. That means not delaying a sensitive call or questioning sending a note to a customer. That is also about using the phone instead of an email. That also means going the extra mile to reach people and getting creative.

Without the power of a renowned brand behind them; without a strong presence on the market; even without famous references, the people have to make the difference. They have to find new ways to reach out to the most inaccessible contacts. They need to seize every opportunity to pitch, present or just get in touch with potential customers, advisors or ambassadors.

But …

Art+Snapchat-Startups Bullshit to be heard

Beyond these advantages, startups need not to get lost and must stick to basics.

  • Do you want unicorn employees or do you actually want people bringing in ideas, participating in the reflection and adding value? Not just people “knowing it all” and not developing their own selves and the company.
  • Do you also need to burn funding on the perks race? Or rather on making sure the company can keep offering these perks forever ? That is staying in business and growing.
  • Is stress making decisions? When in dire need of money or support, do not fall for the easy – bullshit – solution. Never relinquish the purpose of your business for a handful of cash.
  • Last, do not burn your one shot at your audience on an MVP – make it an acceptable product at least.

And keep kicking giants in the … business!

Also published on Medium.