Sure, there are plenty of startup resources to look into, but which ones will you need for a path towards success? Read below for the details on the 5 important ones!
The modern-day startup is defined by its resourcefulness and adaptability, and the spirit of global connectivity. Competition is fiercer than it has ever been. But the opportunities for collaboration and remote connection are greater than ever to boot.
To outperform the competition, reach the most people, and dominate the local market. Startups today must leverage existing and upcoming technologies, and manage a global talent pool.
Any aspiring startup in today’s climate will also have to deal with the century’s greatest economic challenge: an ongoing pandemic. In times like these, it’s important to focus on what works best, and shed what’s non-essential.
Here are our five startup resources you’ll need for success.
1. The Right Workspace
The completely remote business model works for many companies, especially in the digital and tech industries. But these models aren’t applicable to all businesses. There are still many startups that rely on face-to-face business, and there are companies that see benefits in working from an office that cannot be mimicked in a completely remote setup.
Working alongside one another can improve performance and efficiency in communication, allow for spontaneous collaboration and interaction, make it much easier to train newcomers, help stave off burnouts caused by isolation, and speed up project ideation, planning, and execution. While remote work will absolutely play a greater role from now on for both productivity and safety reasons, some tasks are still best coordinated in person.
But any old office setup would be unsuited to the challenges and dangers posed by the coronavirus, which is why new ideas are necessary to help prepare the workplace, and those who work in it. Once workspaces are retrofitted to accommodate their workers, there’s still the issue of limited space. Social distancing and dedensification play a critical role in minimizing the effects of the virus.
Coworking spaces are ideally suited to implementing all necessary safety precautions while providing the perfect environment for small teams to return to work together. They include combining remote collaboration with face-to-face communication, acting as spokes to the hub in a wheel, and ensuring that startups can leverage existing safe spaces to get back to work without endangering their team.
2. Remote Collaborative Tools
Any lean startup seeking to make the most of the challenges and limitations of this year will rely heavily on remote collaborative tools. This is of course to communicate between on-site teams and workers staying at home.
Collaborative tools are the connective tissue of any aspiring startup. In addition, enabling instant communication across oceans and making it possible to collaborate on projects regardless of physical distance.
Whenever face-to-face collaboration isn’t possible, it’s time to turn to tools like OBS for screen capture. Also, Microsoft Teams for documentation and ideation, Trello for planning, Zoom for meetings, and so on.
3. A Feature-Rich Helpdesk
Customer service and support are critical. Especially for startups where early experiences between a company and their first customers can result in thousands of new sales, or a ruined reputation.
Beneath viral social marketing, glowing customer reviews, and an enviable following online lies the nitty gritty legwork of swiftly and efficiently addressing customer complaints and problems. In addition, troubleshooting errors, and conveying – as best as possible – that you care.
Managing all this without the digital infrastructure to do it efficiently can be soul-crushing work. Not to mention resulting in countless wasted hours. An effective helpdesk and customer support solution is a critical investment for any startup looking to create a long-lasting and loyal customer base.
4. Designs and Designers
Startups need consistent quality branding and marketing material that is up to snuff with the competition – or better yet, beats it.
There are plenty of platforms and resources dedicated to promoting designers and artists skilled in creating entire design suites for startups. Being in contact with a designer you know, someone who you feel best encapsulates what your company means to you in a visual sense, is an important resource.
5. Market Research Tools
Analyzing and capitalizing on data is critical for any startup trying to get a leg up in today’s market environment. That’s where market research tools become really important. From analyzing trends for content and marketing purposes, to drafting, sending, and compiling data from surveys to the customers and potential customers you serve and will serve.
Identifying and recruiting testers is just as important. Especially when you want to make sure your product is developed to suit your target audience, and not flop on day one. There are many different platforms and services to help you get as much insight into your customers as possible. These include free tools like Google Trends and Crunchbase to paid local surveys.
Other Startup Resources
Concrete startup resources vary greatly from industry to industry, and business to business. You might need more people at work and hands on deck. You might need to focus most on better equipment, or a hygiene plan that lets you operate better during the ongoing crisis. Or a plan that attracts critical investment. Perhaps you need more immediate financing to help your business off the ground. Or, what you need most is to focus exclusively on promoting your business locally. And attracting clients currently dissatisfied with the services that are available to them.
Identifying what you need the most and investing in that need requires a keen eye and a tactical mind. As well as a knack for leadership. Especially now, when many are worried about their jobs and the prospect of surviving this crisis as a smaller company.
Even more important is the ability to reflect on the one thing that never truly stops growing: experience. Do you have the capacity to sit back and analyze your failures? Or are you going to repeat them?
Running a business is never easy. And neither is weathering the negativity and opposition constantly in place against you and your dreams. That’s why the two most important resources, past even experience, or reflection, are motivation and support.
Never forget the humanity behind your business, and the importance of promoting that human element in everything you do. From inspiring your coworkers, to forging that human connection with your clients and customers, and finding fulfillment in the everyday process between a startup’s early days and that first taste of true success.