Dreams are important. They make people push the envelope a little extra each day, put their soul into things they believe can change the world, and create world-class products that outclass everything else. But the true potential of dreams is only realised when they are nurtured with the right intent and hard work. So, what does it take to build a successful and multifaceted company that creates impactful products for millions around the world? The first question to ask — why are you building what you are building? No idea is big or small if it is driven by the urge to make an impact for a defined segment, target audience, and geography. Unless a company has answers to these three points, everything else becomes moot.
The Founding Group Should Have A Vision, Not Just A Dream
No one will ever invest in an abstract idea, no client will shell out a considerable sum of money for a product or service that does not add any value to their existing operations, and no person will work in an organisation that doesn’t make them grow personally and professionally. How to build something that you are building? The interesting thing about almost all the interesting things is how they were crafted. What went into the process, how many iterations did it take to get the fit right, and how it was made to attract the eyeballs? These are the fundamental prerequisites that go into realizing your vision.
It Takes A Team To Build Things
The most significant investment a founding group would ever make is investing time, resources, and energy in building a team. To truly disrupt your segment, you need a team that is as motivated as you are. You need a team that can tell you how to innovate and make your products stand out, how to thrive amidst the changing market dynamics, how to celebrate success and introspect failures, and how to identify the human and capital resources required to do a particular job, among other things.
Remember, energy is contagious. Setting the bar high while imbibing a sense of empathy within your team is paramount to success. One cannot succeed as an entrepreneur if they don’t set the right examples. Your team should completely trust you, and on your part, you should be considerate enough to entertain their questions, come what may.
Tell The Right Story, And Tell It To Everyone
Storytelling is one of the most critical tools for founders and leaders while building an enterprise. This travail and passion with which an organization is born are known to the people who are, in most cases, the founding team members or people who join an organization in the first few years of its inception. But those who join an organization years down the road should also be privy to these details.
As a founder, when one regales their new employees of all that the team has gone through in the past few years, it helps them connect immediately to the very core of your enterprise.
It Is All About “Winning As A Team”
Founding group members often must do the heavy lifting together. Sometimes, the situation may demand you to pull off all-nighters and early-mornings for weeks, if not months. Sometimes, the business may require you to travel extensively and get in the thick of things without the luxury of a “cooling-off” period. Sometimes, you may need to make “hard decisions” for everyone’s good, and they might still not be enough. Having a team to back you in such situations is no less than a blessing.
Setting your employees “free” breeds creativity, develops leaders, and increases accountability across verticals. While you need to scale your operations exponentially to keep your finances afloat for years, this shouldn’t mean cutting on necessary expenses such as employee benefits, vendor engagement, and business travel, among other things. Instead, the key is to optimize everything as much as possible. Each vertical of your organization should have a concrete structure that is based on your technological and financial model, legalities in your market and geographies, and your short-term and long-term goals.
Your Vision And Team Should Dictate Your Finances, Not Impulsive Thoughts
I firmly believe that the easiest thing to do is to fail once, and the hardest thing to do is to fail repeatedly and to get up each time. The ability to learn from mistakes and rectifying them comes with a culture of “transparency” and belief in each other. Finances will eventually grow if you stick to something you believe in. Be a risk-taker, if you are not shooting in the dark – back your risks with solid research, tangible strategies, and conclusive assumptions. Team-based vision creates an entity that never disappoints its customers.
I cannot emphasize enough on the need for making your “customers superheroes.” The simple rule is – your entity can survive only when customer happiness and loyalty are in its DNA. Business sense dictates that making customers stick with you is much more financially viable than bringing in new customers altogether. It is imperative to listen to them. The truth of the matter is you are only as good as your customers say. They are your biggest brand endorsers and harshest critics. Listen to them, and you will become unstoppable.
Constructive criticism is the best thing that can happen to a startup. No one can be right all the time, but with a focus in the right direction and a team that stands by you, you can do things that seem undoable at the start. That’s how great companies are born and raised. And that’s how they become unstoppable.