Many people are interested in entrepreneurship and wondering how to start a startup. And since it’s not always self-evident, there are several key steps in this initiative that need to be analysed in detail.
Finding an idea for a startup, product or service
The first thing while trying to create your startup is to define your project, the central idea on which the entrepreneurial adventure will rest. It therefore has to be new and unique, yet realistic and achievable. Such idea should correspond as far as possible to the know-how, skills, knowledge, or qualifications of the project leader.
Before starting, it is always useful to carry out a benchmark, market research or a comparative study, in order to ensure the viability of the products or services, and to better target future individual or professional customers who would be interested, and willing to invest.
And since in a long term scope, the objective remains the sustainability of the project and its profitability. This way of testing the market is useful, for it increases the chances of success. Keeping an open mind, and not (too) restricting the scope of the startup to encourage the development of its business is also a key element to its flourishing and growth.
The choice of legal structure and form
Before getting started, it is necessary to be well informed about the different statuses and possible types of structures, their advantages and disadvantages. For start-ups, the most common forms are: Public Limited Company (PLC), Limited Liability Company (LLC), and Simplified Joint Stock Company (SJSC), There are also many other stuctures.
The choice of structure, as well as the subsequent drafting of the statutes, must be made in such a way as to preserve good flexibility and adaptability. The life of a startup is very often tumultuous in its first years, before experiencing rapid growth. Being able to transform or evolve with growing needs is essential.
If the company has several founders or partners , or if it has to call on outside investors, it is necessary to opt for a legal form that will allow for that later on.
Building your team and network
The success of a startup does not depend only on the talent of its founders, no matter how brilliant and visionary they may be. It must therefore have an ambitious, versatile and competent team with complementary employees who are capable of working together. Each hiring is an opportunity to bring new expertise in the required field.
In order to be operational from the start, the startup must be made up of people who will put their professional knowledge and skills at the service of the team and the company as a whole. During the development of the startup, reinforcements will support the network of experts it benefits from, as employees, consultants or service providers. Engineers, researchers, laboratory workers and specialists will intervene at every important stage.
Coaching, training: integrate an incubator
Becoming a business leader and being a good manager, is not something innate. Sometimes outside help will be useful, if not indispensable. To learn how to manage your business and implement your project. In this respect, Asian countries are well known for offering a favourable environment to aspiring entrepreneurs, with numerous support and training structures, known as incubators or accelerators being available, from the initial phase of reflection or creation.
The importance of having a strong development plan
Apart from “serial entrepreneurs” who can reinvest their past earnings in their new project, any entrepreneur must use bank loans and/or external investors for the sake of supporting the development of the startup, its investments, its hiring.
In order to convince banks and investors to agree to finance the project, it is necessary to have a relevant business model, that which is different from usual practices, and capable of standing out from the competition while highlighting the expected innovative character. The development axes must also appear sufficiently sustainable to reassure the financial partners.