When you’re running a startup, you’re already working very hard and gathering as much new information as you can. Much of what we learn in business we have to learn the hard way. There is certain merit to this in that when you learn something the hard way you generally never forget it, and also in the fact that you gain invaluable skills from learning something on your own.

That said there is a huge amount of merit that comes from not having to reinvent the wheel! The biggest benefit that you get from learning something the hard way is often the lesson that you gain from it, right?

So if you can learn the lesson before you have to make the mistake; or before you have to get in and graft, and learn it the hard way; then you can get the most of that experience – and free up your time and your effort to focus on other things that will build your business.

To save you some time, we have compiled a list of ten startup lessons that you really don’t want to have to learn the hard way.

1. Make sure you stand for what you believe in – even if it means standing alone

Sometimes you’ll be pushing and pushing for something to succeed, and be wondering what on earth it is that you’re actually going to get out of it. This applies with startup businesses in the sense that you may have an idea that’s unique and that you believe in – even if you aren’t sure of its viability.

While you might not see results on paper, if you know in your heart it’s what you want then you need to ensure that you stand up for it. Even if this means standing alone. You might learn the lessons that it’s important to stand up for what you believe in even when the chips are down.

2. People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care

It’s an oldie but a goodie: people aren’t going to be interested in doing business with you until they’re sure that they’re dealing with someone who actually cares about them. If you come across as disingenuous, disinterested, or otherwise disengaged, you can be pretty sure that you’re not going to close the deal!

Make sure that you are fully investing in the people that you’re dealing with, and that you ensure that you’re working with them with the fullness of your attention. Even if you’re busy, people are the most important asset.

3. You gotta give to get

If you want anything in life you have to give as much as you can to get as much as you want out of it.

4. If your heart’s not in it – change something

If you have to get up every day to chase a dream that your heart isn’t in you’ll soon find yourself burnt out and hating the grind. You’ve got to love the process.

5. Dream big but be prepared to give big

Make sure that your dream scares you immensely. It should. Now, go out and work hard at it. Keep your eyes on the bigger picture to keep you moving.

6. Passion + skill = mastery

There are times to play it safe and other times when you need to work hard and to surround yourself with passionate people. You will need lots of perseverance along the way. And if you don’t have the right people and team, they will give up.

7. Clean up after yourself

You need to make a good job of cleaning up your mess. This means taxes, spending and anything else that’s important. Get the basics right before and after you start. Build a firm and better foundation.

8. Speak less. Listen more.

A willingness to learn requires a willingness to listen. You will need a lot of feedback right from the beginning. Listen, adapt and adjust as and when needed.

9. If you want something you’ve never had before you’ll need to do stuff you’ve never done before

This one speaks for itself – but in the startup world you need to give more of yourself than ever before. It takes a lot of sacrifice. Your startup will need your total commitment.

10. To double your net worth, double your self worth

You need to believe that you’re worth it. You’ll get there if you do.  Trust your gut and work towards your goal with all the confidence it needs. Lead your team to success.

For more tips like these, visit the Servcorp site for information on business and how to save money with a serviced or virtual office.