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How to Start a Start-up
The Silicon Valley Playbook for Entrepreneurs
- Read in 10 minutes
- Audio & text available
- Contains 6 key ideas
How to Start a Start-up (2015) is a practical guide to founding your own company. From pitching for funding to hiring employees, these blinks offer tips, strategies and insights about the first steps a start-up should take to forge a path toward solid, sustainable growth.
Key idea 1 of 6
Start-ups need talented founders, streamlined processes and independent team members to grow.
Did you ever build a house of cards as a kid? These flimsy constructions need a strong base and consistent design if you want them to stay standing. Similarly, all start-ups need solid foundations to achieve sustainable growth. So how can you ensure you get off to a good start? By working with more than one founder.
A start-up with two or three founders stands a good chance of sustaining itself because it has multiple skill sets built into its foundation. Say one founder is a strong business developer. He’ll need a cofounder with great people skills, and perhaps another with more technical knowledge. In this way, cofounders can compensate for each other's weaknesses, creating stronger foundations overall.
Other crucial aspects in creating a sustainable start-up are simplifying and delegating. Let’s first take a closer look at how founders can boost their start-up by keeping things simple.
According to former Linkedin and Paypal executive Keith Rabois, simplifying processes can increase overall performance by 30 to 50 percent. For instance, don’t come up with a long list of growth initiatives and try to pursue all of them at once. Instead, distill that list down to three items or less. This will help everyone understand what is important and allocate their time accordingly.
Rabois also advises founders to delegate projects to employees. But this doesn’t mean assigning a team member a task and then micromanaging them every step of the way; this only slows processes and makes teams disgruntled.
Instead, it’s best to let employees take the initiative and get their creative juices flowing. Feel free to guide your team through critical decisions by explaining your perspective. But if you really want them to start innovating, you’ll need to get out of their way!