In this second episode in a mini-series of five, we are talking about the 4 phases of business. The key to moving yourself and your business forward is knowing which phase your business is in, so you then know what to focus on, what success looks like for you in that phase, etc. Today we are talking about business phase 1–startup.
When you are in a startup, what are you doing, what are you focused on, what should you be focused on, how are you feeling, and how do you define success?
Those are all great questions. Let’s get down to the answers.
In a startup, you are focused on validating your offer, period. You have to validate that the idea you came up with is something someone actually wants to buy. So you are working on crafting the right offer, the right product, the right advertising, and copy. You are trying to find your audience, your customer within the marketplace. It’s all about finding the one thing that’s going to move the business forward.
You are agile, adaptable, and you pivot constantly. It feels like a large amount of failure happening in this phase, but failure in the business sense is good because, for everything that fails, you learn what to double down on because it works.
Emotionally, you are focused on making your business successful and you can’t see much of anything outside of that. You are pouring in a large amount of time and personal capital into getting the business running. You are learning at a rapid pace and with each new nugget of information you learn, you wish you could have applied yesterday. You constantly feel behind when it comes to your business. You want to run faster than you are, you want results faster than you are getting them, and you feel like your knowledge of the time available is the rate-limiting step in all of it.
Success in the startup phase is defined by your revenue. You are all about cash flow right now, putting money in the bank. Dollars tell you when your idea has been validated so you are all about seeing that money come in to prove your idea is a solid one to continue to build your business around.
You have very little headcount if any at all. You are probably a one-woman show. You may have a virtual assistant. You may have up to 2 employees. But the reality is that in a startup, you are trying to generate cash flow. You don’t have any money to pay salaries. So you don’t yet have a team.
Startups are usually defined as a company that is validating their offer, focused on cash flow and generating revenue, and making less than $1 million. Again, these are general facts.
Does this sound like you? Is this where you are right now? Go take the quiz: legendleaders.com/quiz and find out for sure.