Innovation: The Father of Startups
Successful startup cultures seem to have something right from the very beginning. Whether it is a one-for-all, all-for-one-commitment, a strong esprit de corps or the thrill of the pursuit, new startup companies can be all encompassing. Truthfully, the typical startup culture mentality is what many of the world’s largest businesses are trying to rediscover and implement in their own corporations. Many of today’s businesses would do well to synchronize with the mindset of the original company founders.
In startups, there is great emphasis on the importance of accomplishing positive activities every day. If the startup is designing a new product or service, there is emphasis on advancing the project. If the startup is preparing to launch the project, there is emphasis on product knowledge and how customers will be treated as well as all the details that go into providing a finished product.
In many ways, a good startup culture has advantages over an existing culture.
Specificity – A startup has the advantage of being able to fill a specific niche. Undivided attention goes into the development of a new product. All working parts and job descriptions relate to the common good, the composition of the new product. Good things happen when co-workers are focused on the same goal.
No Wasted Reserves – The nature of the startup discourages the startup. The cost of the startup is focused. There is simply no room for lax spending. Even after an investor is located or after loans have been arranged, money is tight and personal effort exceeds personal needs.
Swift Response – Startups have the flexibility to respond to unexpected challenges or new opportunities with equal abandon. Startups are also able to respond to their clientele quicker than existing companies. Small startups are unburdened by volumes of internal rules of engagement. They have the flexibility to interact and in that interaction they learn a lot about their new products.
Personalization – One of the things consumers dislike about existing businesses is how they are treated. To address problems with a product, the consumer’s query can be referred to a help site located in another land. While that may now seem normal, it is not in the consumer’s best interest. Consumers prefer personal service that many startups learn to provide personal service that is nimble and quick. Response time can be an asset or a liability and startups tend to be faster than older companies at providing timely service.
In terms of money, angel investors and most lenders consider startups with a guarded eye. Angel investors evaluate the team of entrepreneurs as much as they consider the new idea. What they look for is “ethics, honesty and integrity.” However, those corporate culture characteristics are expected. Startups that do not have these characteristics are viewed as dead before arrival.
Generally, there is passion in startups. Passion for the product, passion about the future and passion to be working together toward identifiable goals, the product and common success. Judith Clegg is the successful founder and CEO of a London and New York-based innovation and consultancy group.
Ms. Clegg admires two characteristics that startups must have; the team approach toward problem solving and the fact that perceived future gains outweigh the present hardship. These are lofty but extremely positive characteristics that encourage advancement of the product.
There is no doubt that the startup always has a sense of urgency that is lacking in established businesses. The startup world is extremely competitive for many reasons. Indeed, the pressure to bring new products to market faster and less expensively has changed the dynamic of the startup business.
Today, the reigning practice of open innovation is helping startups do just that. Through collaboration, startups can reduce the cost of research and even find manufacturing collaborators to bring the product to market in the fastest pace possible. While startups are anxious to embrace collaboration, many existing businesses still operate in closed environments. These businesses will soon become obsolete. Through open innovation, anybody can develop a great idea in the home or garage. Now, that is flexibility at its best.
Lewis Edward is a real estate investor and co-owner of The Office Providers. They provide serviced offices and any kind of office space for small businesses or even large corporations worldwide.