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Navigating The First Year Of Your Startup

  • Identify your strengths and focus on using them to build your success.
  • Be thoughtful when laying the foundation for your business.
  • Hold yourself accountable to the same standards that you hold your employees.
  • Be mindful and intentional about the workplace environment that you create.
  • Document your experiences. Learn from the setbacks as much as you learn from the gains.

It’s no secret that starting a business is intimidating. Branching out and taking a leap of faith to embark on a new journey with an unclear path isn’t for everyone. But, if you’re reading this, then it means that you’re ready to start taking the steps to solidify your future and build your startup into a driving force of innovation and ingenuity. If you need a little guidance along the way, keep reading. This article offers some great tips to successfully navigate your startup’s first year.

Leverage Your Strengths

Ask yourself, “What am I good at?” If you have a hard time answering this question, think about what comes naturally to you. Is there something that other people frequently seek your help with? Whenever you figure out what those things are, you will find your strengths.

When it comes to your startup, you may quickly find yourself pulled in 10 different directions. It may seem like you’re being productive by taking on a hefty workload. However, you’ll quickly find that you’re spreading yourself too thin. This is why it’s critical to find your strengths and focus on leveraging the power within those strengths to build your business.

Build The Foundation

Anything in life needs a foundation upon which to build. A startup is no different. The following should be among the pillars of your foundation:

  • A mission statement
  • Operating procedures and expectations
  • Company morals

Think about the level of service you want to deliver to your customers. From there, you can build upon your mission and set the operating procedures in place that will allow your startup to deliver that service. Hold yourself and your employees accountable to those standards. Maintaining integrity to these standards is essential to building trust within the startup itself and with your clients.

Document The Journey

This is an exciting time filled with successes and inevitable failures. Document the experiences in a journal, log book, or whatever else you find helpful. Being able to look back on where you started and seeing the obstacles you successfully navigated can help you build an appreciation for where you are in the future. It can also act as a guide to remind you of what did or did not produce desired results in the past.

Build A Community

What kind of workplace community do you want your startup to have? The kind of culture around your office will determine the type of employees you bring onboard. It can also play a massive role in retaining valuable employees and building lasting customer relationships.

Embrace Setbacks

There will be setbacks. Embrace them. Reframe any negative thoughts about what a setback is. Rather than thinking of them as nothing but failures, reframe your thinking and begin accepting them as opportunities to learn and grow. Setbacks are excellent tools that allow you to collect valuable information that will enable you to make improvements. Without setbacks you would never learn where or how to improve.

You Are Dictating The Story Of Your Life

Embarking on the journey of a startup is something that you will remember your entire life. The possibilities that lie ahead of you are immeasurable. Seize any opportunity when it comes your way and never forget to enjoy the ride. Find the bright spots on the dark days and use this time to dictate the story of your life. 

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