Startup Essentials

This is a good place to start.

Here are a variety of things you’ll need to think about every day while running a startup:

Finance, sales, engineering, business development, marketing, product development, board members, administration, operations, legal, organizational structure, human resources, benefits, organizational behavior, company culture, vision, mission, values, goals, advisory board members, exit strategies, company objectives… and the list goes on. And we even started a section on what to do if your startup hits Hard Times.

You can see by all of the items above that startups take an immense amount of knowledge, work, and even some luck. Through this website, we will try to identify key elements and components which can help put you on the right path to a winning startup. However, beware that there are no guarantees and anything can happen. Having dealt with over 200 startups, I have seen startups succeed for no reason, and fail when they shouldn’t. We all know of startups that have been sold for billions and questioned why, and billion-dollar ideas that have gone bankrupt.

Think of a couple examples in the past. Many of you may not remember PointCast which was a push technology revolution which launched and grew back in the mid-90s. PointCast would push news and information to your desktop which was absolutely unheard of back in that timeframe. At one point PointCast was offered a deal for over $450 million to be purchased by Newscorp. The leaders of PointCast mistakenly turned down the offer and decided to go it alone, believing that their company would be the next billion-dollar play. Low and behold, it wasn’t long before the IT leaders of corporate America decided that PointCast’s push technology was clogging their Internet pipes. IT administrators began shutting down access to PointCast and the company eventually sold for $6 million after $48 million have been invested.

Alternatively, let’s take a look at YouTube. Here we have a simple idea of enabling users to quickly and easily upload videos which today seems pedestrian in nature. However, YouTube was revolutionary and by enabling video it sold for $1.6 billion to Google.

So you can see that some good ideas and companies can be squandered while simple ideas can turn into billion-dollar companies. As a result there are no guarantees with startups and the odds of being successful are probably one in 100. However, don’t let that stop you from continuing on the path of entrepreneurship.