It’s no secret that we live in a fast-paced world where novelty is the new normal. Because of this, it’s never been easier in the history of civilization to birth a successful company on the strength of a superb idea.
While there are many reasons for this bewildering speed of progress, they are rooted in the evolution of innovative technology and the lower cost of starting a business from scratch because of the reach of the Internet.
Still, an original idea isn’t necessary to launch a prosperous business. Even if your organization is not as disruptive as Elon Musk’s innovative projects — like PayPal, private-enterprise space exploration, and electric cars—you can still use the strategies, tactics, and practices of famous startups.
Let’s look at some things that all triumphant startups, whether based on conventional or unusual business ideas, have in common.
3 Characteristics of Outstanding Startups
Founders of successful startups have three character traits in common: they have a grand vision; they put in the work to make things happen; and they are persistent in getting the financial support necessary to launch.
1. Create a Big, Compelling Vision
After you’ve recruited your talented team, you need to articulate a vision of where you’re going and why it’s important. If, for example, you’re starting a church, paint a picture of how your church will look upon completion. Don’t just talk about what you see in your imagination but make your vision appear tangible to your listeners, too. You could, for instance, pull up the Guthman Signs website at https://guthmansigns.com/church to illustrate how beautifully designed LED-based outdoor church signs will attract parishioners in search of fresh spiritual inspiration.
A fascinating vision helps people feel they belong to something greater than their own limited self-interests. It not only gives them a sense of belonging but also fires them up with excitement about joining a significant movement.
As a founder of a business or organization, you have to ask yourself some fundamental questions:
- Why does your company exist in the first place?
- What can it accomplish that other similar enterprises have failed to deliver? In other words, what is its unique selling proposition, or USP?
- Why will people be excited to work for you or to do business with you?
2. Develop a Magnificent Obsession
It’s not enough to come up with a fabulous goal and a plan. Nothing will happen unless you work your plan. Often things will not work out as you had envisaged — and you and your executives will end up working long hours every day of the week.
It’s not just about putting in the work to get measurable results, it’s also about enduring long, hard hours of work with little compensation or rewards. We’re talking about absolute commitment here. Bill Gates, for example, dropped out of Harvard to build Microsoft. Since he was an excellent student with a brilliant future in the higher echelons of the corporate world, he risked everything for a vision that only burned brightly in his own mind.
3. Persist in Getting Financial Support
If creating a vision will give you a sense of direction and if developing a magnificent obsession will give you the courage to move forward despite apparently overwhelming obstructions, then organizing financial support will give you the resources necessary to build your enterprise.
However, the less conventional your idea, the less likely a traditional lender is to give you the money to start. So you may have to approach venture capitalists or talk to angel investors to give your fledgling company a chance to prove itself. These, of course, aren’t your only options for alternative financing. Depending on the nature of your startup, you might even be able to generate revenues by creating a subscription service.
One thing to remember is that raising financial support is not about asking for a break because you desperately need help. Instead, it’s about pitching your vision and mission purpose with such clarity that the lender feels it’s a smart move to financially back your project.
All in all, when you start to think like a startup when launching your business, you will infuse your project with the right attitude and mindset. In truth, with enough courage, any business idea is viable.