There are thousands of startups that are founded each year, but not all of them survive. One way to ensure that your startup survives is by looking at the way that you manage it. There are a myriad of things that can go wrong when running a startup. The best thing you can do as a business owner is by learning from your mistakes and ensuring that your business is run at its best.
As a startup owner these six things are important to know about how to manage a startup well to ensure success.
1. Implement process documentation
This might seem like common knowledge, but not all startup owners have process documentation in place. When a business makes use of process documentation they create efficiency and reduce errors.
Process documentation is also used to ensure that the delivered work is consistent and that each employee’s deliverables look exactly the same. It makes it easier for your internal staff and your customers to recognise each template and to spot mistakes easier.
To have up to date process documentation available also reduces the time spent on training as new employees immediately have access to the templates. They will be able to coordinate their work to fit in with the expectations of your business. When your training period is shorter, more time can be spent on developing the business.
2. Have clearly defined project management standards
When a company has clearly defined project management standards it ensures that all projects are treated and run equally. This avoids inconsistencies and ensures that your team members are able to shift around into different projects and teams.
This will also allow for your employees to be used to a certain style of project management and make skill transfers easier. Your employees will know what to expect from their leaders which makes collaboration so much more flexible and productive.
If your employees are collaborating well, your business will run more smoothly and the opportunity for growth provides itself.
Aside from implementing the process documentation, it is important that each team member (no matter their experience) gets training before being integrated into the business. This will ensure that extra bit of control to make sure that the transition is smooth and up to your expectations and standards.
However, training should not just happen when the employee starts at the business. Training is important for the duration of the employee’s time with the company. When your staff is trained well, and their skills are developed continuously, you will develop a highly- and multiskilled team. A team like that brings in more business and they are able to easily adapt to new situations.
Make sure that training and learning platforms are available to your employees at all times. This will motivate them to learn new skills and better their talents.
4. Set realistic goals
The saying “don’t bite off more than you can chew” is ever so true when setting goals. Startup owners get excited and want to take on as many customers as possible. But pushing your employees to their max just to reach unrealistic goals set out by the startup owner does not lead to sustainable growth.
It is important to note that your employees are just people and that setbacks can happen. Set out reachable goals and make sure that your team is comfortable with the time limits and the expectation in the end.
When goals are realistic and reachable they can be completed within the time frame and will also render the best possible outcome. Your employees will feel less under pressure and your business will flourish.
5. Have realistic client expectations
For a company to grow, the clientele is most important. In the beginning when your business is still small, it is better to keep a handful of faithful clients. When you keep your customer base limited, you can provide the best possible service.
Having happy clients is much better for your startup than having numerous clients that you cannot handle who end up being unhappy. Remember, a customer wants to feel like they are the only one.
Not only is it more profitable to keep a small clientele, but by identifying their needs and fulfilling them, they will stay loyal to you. Loyal customers improve your word of mouth exposure and systematically help you grow your customer base.
6. Learn from setbacks
Having a startup comes with new lessons and new challenges. This means that at some point there will be setbacks. One thing a startup owner should never do is sit back and cry about spilled milk.
Stand up, step back, and analyse the situation. Decide what you did wrong and learn from the past mistakes. Asking yourself “what did I learn from this?” after each setback will help to clear up your vision to see your mistakes. And once you know where your mistakes lie, you are able to work on this and prevent mistakes in the future.
Make sure that any and all setbacks are treated like a learning experience. Not just for you as a startup owner, but for your team and employees as well. Once they are comfortable with learning from their mistakes they will be able to improve as well.
Being a startup owner can be challenging at times. Especially when it comes to managing your employees. You as a startup owner want to manage your startup and employees well. You also want to ensure that your startup survives and thrives. It starts with having well managed employees who are willing to learn and accept their mistakes.