What Is Bootstrapping
The term bootstrapping is a verb that means to get (oneself or something) into or out of a situation using existing resources. To bootstrapping during the time of a recession refers to the ideology of wanting to succeed, no matter how limited the resources may be. Recession is always known as the worst time to search for a job, so many people turn to entrepreneurship. However, due to the economic downturn, many investors might not invest. Hence, it leads to bootstrapping. Here are how some entrepreneurs have bootstrapped during a recession.
Providing Their Customers With Special Offers
Launching a business in itself is quite tricky, which is why we can infer that starting a business during a recession can be even trickier. A technique that has previously been used by several successful entrepreneurs is to provide their customers with value propositions, and the best way to do that is to give their target market special offers. This can include exclusive products, exclusive services, aesthetically pleasing product designs, and packaging. All of these value propositions will allow your business to gain a competitive edge.
Choosing The Suppliers Meticulously
All business consists of stakeholders, such as suppliers, distributors, customers, and more. It is important to pick the best supplier in order to survive during the recession. An entrepreneur should always pick a supplier who would work with you as you grow your business. Reliable suppliers can also help in keeping the business activity schedule on time. They can also enhance the quality of the product by providing high-quality raw materials at cost-effective prices. These two factors are essential for any business to succeed.
Building A Relationship Of Trust With Customers
All business owners understand the importance of customer retention, as loyal customers are likely to bring in more revenue. In more technical terms, this step is known as creating brand loyalty within your customers, which is especially important to make your business a successful one during a recession. The best approach for this is to maintain the quality of your product, provide exclusive services to loyal customers, and by conducting your business in an ethical manner. Having loyal customers would make your business recession-proof.
Why Is It Favorable To Start A Business During A Recession?
Even though we have looked at all the methods of offsetting shortfalls, several people may find it hard to understand why some individuals find it favorable to start a business during a recession. The reasons are quite simple. People value innovation, particularly during a recession. As big companies would cut the budget for innovation, it is time for entrepreneurs to step in to create and innovate. It is also fair to assume that people prefer to save their money in a recession, which is why they are known to opt for companies that provide quality products in an innovative way!
Starting a successful business, no matter how small during a recession, isn't as simple as it may seem. You must ask yourself questions, such as do I have what it takes, what can I offer to that hasn't been done already, and most importantly, where will the resources come from? It is important to integrate all aspects of a business before starting one. The best decisions are those that are well-informed.
The last financial crisis, also known as the Great Recession, occurred during the years of 2007-08. It was the most severe economic crisis and unleashed destruction in financial markets all over the world. Started by the crumbling of the housing bubble in the US, it brought many essential businesses to the verge of a breakdown and took nearly five years for things to come back to normal. However, the Chinese writing of crisis is 危機. The two characters represent danger and opportunity. Entrepreneurs who were savvy enough launched their startups in the last economic downturn. Here is a list of 5 companies formed in the last financial crisis.
The most well-known outcome of the financial crisis of 2007-08 is indeed the formation of WhatsApp. In 2009, yahoo employees, Brian Acton and Jan Koum, founded WhatsApp. They wanted individuals from all over the world to connect with each other. The start of the journey was definitely not a smooth one. With the starting staff of only fifty employees and less funding, they did face many hurdles. However, like numerous other successful businesses, they found their way through and have won over major messaging apps such as iMessage and Facebook Messenger.
2. Credit Karma:
Ken Lin established a company known as Credit Karma during the middle of the financial crisis of 2008. It is a personal finance business related to financial technology utilizing adaptable models to annex organizations and clients through an online platform. In return for entering individual data, people can access and screen their credit reports and scores at no cost. Currently, the company has more than 250 employees. It even obtained funding of $2.5 million in November 2009 and has secured $368.5 million in overall financing.
Then college kids, Magdon-Ismail and Kortina, who met at the University of Pennsylvania, launched Venmo as an easy way for peer-to-peer money transfer. Instead of carrying cash to pay your friends, you could easily use Venmo. They were able to gain young users right away, given their popularity with the streams and the emojis in transactions. It was so successful that Paypal bought it.
Instagram was created in San Francisco by Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom in the year 2010 when the world was going through one of the gravest financial crisis of all the time. Instagram revolves around posting pictures and videos with some cool filters and effects. From the very start, the business was a huge triumph with over a million users in just two months after it was released. Currently, it has 400 employees, with more than 130 million users.
Cloudera was created in 2008 by engineers Amr Awadallah, Christophe Bisciglia, and Jeff Hammerbacher. It is a US-based startup that gives a software platform for data engineering and analytics that operates in the cloud or on-premises. Currently, the company values more than $2 billion.
There are always opportunities in a crisis. With a pandemic and a global recession, this could be a golden opportunity hidden during this crisis for every hungry entrepreneur. Use this opportunity and hustle on!
For any business owner, no matter the size of the company, a frugal mindset is essential. When you think frugally, you have the power to spend your money smartly. Being frugal is not being cheap. Frugality understands the value of the purchases being added to the company and being cheap means the focus is only on the sticker price.
In a way, that is the concept of being a lean startup. In a way, the lean startup idea is almost dead as most are spending lavishly on things that don't contribute to the core of the company. However, once the economy slows down, lean startup and frugality will be more relevant. A frugal business owner can carefully assess their business and wisely spend the money based on their needs. The cut in unnecessary spending could help the company to survive any unforeseen situations as a frugal business owner could operate at maximum capacity with lower costs than his/her competitors.
Listed below are the five reasons to become a frugal business owner:
Frugality is a Mindset Being a frugal business owner doesn't imply that you need to curb money at any expense. What will set your business apart from the others will be the careful decisions you choose to make from number and results and then to spend the money accordingly. Improving business operation is more important, even if you start with a minimum amount because such a mindset will help you in the long run.
Frugal Owners have a Sharper Instinct Knowing how, where, and when to spend the money wisely is important as sometimes it is too tempting to pass off a perfectly good deal, and you can acquire a habit out of it. Or you end up making a purchase that does not go toward your goal. Business frugality means always taking sharp decisions, rather than acting rashly, which can turn out to be good for your business.
Training Yourself for Emergencies Even if you end up saving your expenses, and your business is profitable, you can still face bad times. Companies have their ups and downs, and it's important not to lose hope when it starts to go downhill. That is why you should be prepared for any setback that shouldn't be viewed as a failure. Frugal owners know that in order to survive in the overflowing business market, one should always be prepared for setbacks.
False Assumptions About the frugal owners, the common misconception that goes around is that they never spend big. The thing to note about spending money on big projects is that you carefully do proper research and see if you need to invest or not. Therefore, even if you are at the top of the game, you must always keep a frugal mindset.
Tracking Expenses Certain assumptions that go on about successful owners are that they can buy anything as they please. But, a frugal owner would try his best to save the money that can be used for long term purposes. And they choose to live below their means, rather than living a luxurious life.
From Charles Munger to Benjamin Franklin, all the successful people tend to live a frugal life below their means. If you are about to start a new business, it is important to note that you don't measure your success with others. As frugality requires a lot of patience, and sharp thinking to make an improved decision for their business.
We have often heard people saying that you do not need to study to be an entrepreneur, and the myth is that these people are inherently born with natural abilities to be an entrepreneur. Sure we see many on the media seemingly starting their businesses without proper knowledge, yielding spectacular results. However, many of these businesses have not caught the media's attention until they have tried many ways to become successful and struggled after many years. So, do not trust the media on its take on entrepreneurship.
You cannot just wake up one day and decide, “Oh! Today is the day I will start my own venture”. It takes time, planning, and strategy. The idea of becoming your own boss has tempted many to leave their corporate slavery and become an entrepreneur. It a known fact that the kind of lifestyle one gets to enjoy as an entrepreneur has no match. Isn’t it what makes us so interested in being one?
You might keep stalling the process and feel a sense of fear before taking the first step. Or you can be one of those who should wait, do proper planning but feel like you are born ready. So to take you out of this dilemma, the following are the five signs which show that you are finally ready to be an entrepreneur in 2020:
YOU HAVE AN IDEA YOU TRULY BELIEVE IN
This is one of the most significant signs. It is very important for an entrepreneur-to-be to know what he or she wants. If he or she clearly knows what they want and truly believes in it, then there is nothing that can stop them from achieving it. The key is to be a hundred percent sure about what you are doing. Also, make sure
YOU KNOW YOUR PROSPECTIVE BUYERS
Once the idea is clear in your head, you also know that you have a good market for the products and services you are planning on selling. To know that people are willing to buy the product or service you are planning to sell is a major sign that you are ready to be an entrepreneur.
YOU ARE WILLING TO TAKE RISKS
It is very important to understand that businesses are all about either getting it all or losing it all. There is a 50 percent chance of getting all the success in the world which you have hoped for or losing it and facing failures. The main thing is to understand the severity of it and still take the chance.
YOU HAVE THE FINANCES
One more very important sign which shows that you are finally ready to be an entrepreneur is that you have cash available, and you are willing to use it for the business you are planning on starting.
YOU ARE READY TO GIVE IT YOUR ALL
Last but not least, one of the most major signs which show that you are finally ready to start your own venture is when you are willing to give your all to the success of that business.
Above mentioned are a few signs which show one is ready to be an entrepreneur in 20 — the biggest of it being passionate about something and working hard for achieving it.
A coworking space is proven to be beneficial for entrepreneurs and freelancers. Especially if you are starting a new business, a coworking space may have many positive impacts on it.
What Is A Coworking Space?
A coworking space is a creative, shared office space that promotes cultural socialization, which helps nurture business and increase your well-being. If you are considering working in a coworking space with your team, these are the advantages you should keep in mind:
Structure And Productivity
Working from home sounds cozy, but it has a lot of distractions. When you get out of that private space for a specific reason, it provides a structure to your life. It is less congested than a corporate office yet more structured than working from home. It has fewer formalities and distractions but more productivity, which makes it a convenient place to get work done. When you are surrounded by other people who are working hard, you will be motivated to work diligently too. It makes you more focused and confident.
A Comfortable, Business-friendly Workplace
A coworking space has all the facilities that make it a business-friendly workplace. At home or a library, you might have a lousy internet connection, but at a coworking space, you won’t find such problems. Also, there be a brightly lit facility, comfortable desks and chairs, printers, meeting rooms, pantry, and leisure areas for tea breaks.
Having your team members to encourage you for your work can be your biggest motivation. When you are by yourself, it becomes challenging to hold yourself accountable for the time and money spent. When you are paying for the coworking space, you would want to keep your accounts and expenses up to date. When your team members are with you in the coworking space, you will face the problems that arise in your business enthusiastically. You will not lose your morale because the team will support you through everything.
Cutting Costs And Gaining Flexibility
Working in a coworking space will help you cut costs in your business. Since a coworking space is a public office, the rent and utility bills will be divided and will, therefore, save a lot of money. Besides that, the other facilities are shared too, so it doesn’t take much to cut in your budget.
Since a coworking space is a public space, there is a more significant opportunity for developing business relationships and links. Having business friends who help you is a crucial resource for you and your business. You can also end up hiring each other or starting a business together. If you are an introvert, yet a hard-working person, your work will speak for itself. When it does, your coworkers will know who to call when they need help and vice versa. It is also a professional place to meet your clients since inviting them at home does not give a good impression. If your client is orthodox, he will not hire someone without a professional environment.
Working in a coworking space not only gives you the benefits related to money. They also help in less tangible ways, such as socializing, having peers close to your network, and being surrounded by other motivated individuals.
Are you thinking of starting a business? Or do you already have a running start-up? Things might get overwhelming at times as start-ups require a lot of long hours and hard work to be successful. However, one should always keep the goal in sight and finance in check.
You need to make sure that you have an efficient system running that allows you to be the most efficient with your capital. You don't want to be one of those startups who burn through their cash before their product was even mass adopted.
We’ve come up with a list of five important steps that you should incorporate in your startup to minimize your cost.
While starting a business requires a lot of capital, there’s an efficient way that you can go about it. Rather than taking up large and unnecessary expenses, you should analyze what’s beneficial for your business in the long run. A cost-benefit analysis is extremely important for you when it comes to spending. Is the expense you’re planning on making going to be beneficial for you? Will the benefit exceed the cost? These are all the questions you need to think of before spending on anything for your startup.
Opt for coworking spaces
The coworking community has been in high demand recently. It’s efficient, effective, and it allows you to get your work done while incurring a lower cost. Coworking has been proven extremely beneficial for startups as it helps the business owners to reduce their costs. Shared space allows you to share rent according to the floor space you occupy while giving you access to other great people as well! You can now work side-by-side with other startups and learn from them while trying to establish and grow your business.
Secure a minimum viable product
A minimum viable product (MVP) refers to something that is like a prototype of the product you wish to provide in the market. Having an MVP allows you to get first-hand feedback from customers and get to know what exactly needs to be improved before launching the actual product into the market. The customers who get this product are limited. Thus it provides business owners with a test-run that helps them figure out how to modify and improve the actual product.
It might be a smart idea to outsource when you are building the first product. If you are unsure if the product will do well, having a permanent employee could be stressful. The market is filled with people who freelance. You can easily find people that meet the job description for your startup using different websites. Avoid high costs and stress by paying freelancers specifically for the project they do!
Use free marketing channels
Marketing could be done free or at a lower cost than you think. You can easily do this by using social media as your medium to market your business. Switch to SEO marketing later for quicker and more cost-effective results and conversions!
Startup life is already stressful enough, but it would be more stressful without money. You need to make sure that you avoid high costs so that you don’t become a victim of a cashless company.
Check out our coworking space to save you money this year!
Overthinking is generally considered a negative trait in any scenario because of the negative impact it has. If you’re someone that suffers from overthinking when it comes to decision-making at your startup, then let’s get something clear. If you’re overthinking about details and taking too long to make decisions, then you’re going to lose out on many opportunities. This causes analysis paralysis, which is what a lot of brilliant founders fall into that trap. Overthinking causes problems that you probably don’t even exist in your startup. We’ll be discussing a detailed list of everything that goes wrong in your startup because of overthinking.
Leads to Procrastination
Have you ever wondered why you’re unable to mark all your boxes on your checklist on time? One possible reason for this is your overthinking behavior. Once you start thinking about something, it isn’t very easy for you to stop analyzing it. This results in you only thinking about what could be done rather than taking any actions and getting work done. The initials days of startup make or break your business. If you’re going to be overthinking about things that are minute or don’t require too much time to resolve, then you will lose out.
Lower levels of productivity
Once you’ve become a victim of overthinking, you’re bound to be less productive at your work. How are you supposed to grow your startup if you’re unable to focus your energy and time on important matters? The more you overthink, the less productive you become, which in turn results in low or negative growth levels.
Clogged mind with less creativity
Having your mind stuck on a particular issue usually blocks all sorts of ideas. If you’re constantly overthinking about petty issues in the business, then you’re bound to be less productive. Overthinking plays with your ability to be creative and produce new content for your startup to grow. There are slim chances of growth if you can’t think of new strategies and game plans to improve your productivity and growth.
Loss of business opportunities
Overthinking leads to you losing important and futile business opportunities for your startup. The inability to decide whether a certain partnership or contract will be beneficial for you will leave you facing a loss. What you need to do is accumulate all the possible beneficial business opportunities and develop your startup.
Someone with determination to grow their startup has a sense of responsibility, and they’re quick with decision making. They’re optimistic. If you’re stuck in a loop where you’re procrastinating with low levels of productivity, you’re bound to be pessimistic. Pessimism is a negative trait to have when conducting business, and you need to have a positive outlook and take upon every challenge.
Overthinking stops you from becoming a good entrepreneur. Your hyper-planning and excessive thinking only waste your time and resources. Learn how to be comfortable in making your decisions and then committing to them. Otherwise, your overthinking is likely to kill your startup as it rids you of all the opportunities to grow!
It's a new decade, new year. There must be new ideas for new ways to do things. As many get convinced and excited about their new ideas, they form their new companies, often without a plan or a roadmap.
Importance of a Road Map for the Startup
A business should never be started without a destination or exit strategy. A roadmap could lead you to the goal. This roadmap defines company objectives, policies, values, expected direction of growth in the form of chart, strengths, weaknesses, threats, and prospective opportunities. This roadmap can be used as a guideline for investors and customers as well. The road map gives a base for formulating policies and strategies for product marketing and launching. It helps in analyzing and reviewing future threats and the current situation of the market.
Roadmaps help in setting goals and assist in implementing the rules and policies with efficiency. The roadmap should be timely reviewed by the founders and directors of the startup and can be altered if needed. Roadmaps should also define in detail the role of every department in the startup and expected growth of that department to help human resources in the future manage their expectations.
The road map of the startup consists of short term and long term goals and timelines set by the founders. Other details such as how the resources are allocated, what are the sources of the capital, contingency plans, how to penetrate the market, and compete with the competitors are also defined in the road map. It could also help you figure out your burn rate to ensure your startup doesn't run out of money anytime soon.
How to Develop a Roadmap
A step by step guide is discussed below that will help in developing a practical roadmap for the startup.
Identify the Problems
The first most important step while developing a roadmap for the startup is to identify the existing problems prevailing in the market. Because once these problems are identified, it gives you a big picture of the overall market, and it will be easier to formulate strategies to avoid such problems while entering into the market.
Target the Audience
Formulating effective marketing strategies and targeting a specific group of audience according to the nature of the product is the second important step. It can be done by delivering high-quality content that appeals to the target audience about the product and the startup.
Professionals from different fields such as finance, law, IT, etc. should be hired so that they can take care of the matters related to their fields. Because one single person cannot be an expert in all fields at the same time.
Define Mission, Vision, and Strategy
Define the startup’s mission vision and business plan in detail in the roadmap. This will serve as a ground for building up future business plans and strategies. These statements can be reviewed and altered from time to time, as and when needed.
The roadmap provides a line of action for the startups. Therefore, it is always important to create a roadmap before starting the business and entering into the market. It will always help in making better choices and decisions by the founders. It will always guide the audience to understand the aims and objectives of the project.
Have you been bootstrapping your company? There are many ways through which you can bootstrap your business for your valuable resources and finances. It is one of the easiest ways to get started with your business if you have had savings. Of course, there were other examples such as Tim Ferriss, who used his credit card debt to bootstrap his business. However, only do the credit card option if you have a tremendous amount of confidence in your hustle and your new company. However, as your business grows and scales, you should probably consider injecting fresh capital into it.
This process takes time. You cannot raise your money and business funds the very next day you have started your business. You need to be patient enough and give time to your business. You need to make sure that you think about the long run of your company. And that is why you need to read every clause to ensure the policies. Make sure that you follow the below-mentioned tips to maintain your patience for fundraising and bootstrapping.
Tips for Maintaining Patience for Bootstrapping and Fundraising:
As fundraising and bootstrapping is a challenging part of businesses. Therefore, a high level of patience is required at every step of the business process. You may find it challenging to convince investors to fund your business. This is because investors look for well-established companies to invest in rather than taking a risk by investing in unproven startups. Therefore, ensure these tips and maintain patience.
Align With the Investors:
Always make sure that you align your business with the right investor. You might find an investor even after months or years but maintain your patience. Do not stress out. Give time to the investors to think about your company as well. After all, you don't want to appear too desperate and codependent.
Do Not Get Frustrated So Quickly:
Now that you have a business to grow, try to manage stress, and your level of frustrations. This is because you might make a wrong decision or deal if you are stressed. Give time to analyze the investor and then make a final decision.
Always Set A Clear, Focused Plan:
You must set a focused plan before starting with the fundraising process. This will help you to convince your investors and set a positive impression on the venture capitalists. Do not just make a deal with anyone who offers. Take time to make the right decision.
Set Achievable Objectives:
Always set realistic and achievable goals. Always talk about the future objectives clearly with the fundraisers. This is because the fundraisers are mainly concerned about the future profitability of the company rather than the current state.
Never Over Promise for Anything:
This is one of the biggest mistakes that company owners make by being impatient. Only promise about those outputs that you are sure about. Do not over-promise on things that you cannot deliver on time.
You cannot achieve all the goals and objectives together. You need to be patient and try to focus on one goal at a time. Be wise to choose the right fundraiser. The right funder will appear given time and patience.
To reduce your burn rate while maintaining your patience, cowork with us! Check out our space by scheduling a tour today.
A huge amount of people, no matter young or old, are joining the startup community. However, it doesn't matter the age; we all have different experiences that could help each other.
For those who are new to the startup world, it could be difficult to navigate. One does not need to reinvent the wheel or to navigate a system that has been crossed by others already. Here are some other reasons why do you need to get help and advice for your startup.
Preparation to Confront the World
In today's day and age, there is an entire crowd of youngsters who have such innovative and creative ideas that one is unable to understand the failure of their startup. The biggest reason why many startups face a downhill is that they are being led by young men and women who are not aware of what the outside world has to offer them. They enter the world with a fresh mind that yet has to learn the ways of the world. Having a mentor prepares them with what is ready to tackle them down. Having a controlled and refined vision helps in making a startup successful.
Oftentimes, one cannot assess oneself clearly. The decisions you make may be wrong, and you may not realize that until someone tells you. A mentor can tell you about your mistakes. If you lose the right track, a mentor can hold your hand and take you back on it by guiding you. However, one needs to be humble to take criticism from others.
When it comes to financing, it can be challenging to start a business with huge amounts of profits from day one. One has to invest a tremendous amount of money for the business to reach a place where one can call it stable. Mentors do not only help with advice but also financing a company that can grow in the future. This not only builds a relationship of trust but boosts one's confidence, which is needed to run a newly formed business.
As a business starts running, it cannot lead on with the same idea with which it started. In order to stay competitive, the entrepreneur should be aware of different ways to keep the customers loyal and develop a strong name in the market. The mentor is not there so that you can get your business into running but also for how one should be recruiting new employees to the organization.
When you start a business, you invest your own money and time. In order to be successful and not have your time and money wasted, you need to have guidance. Experienced people know business strategies that can help you earn more than you invested. Only a skilled person can tell you this.
Awareness of Future Hazards
A novice will not have the same knowledge as an expert. A person with experience will have learned from downfalls and mistakes. He can guide a newbie what mistake not to make and how to remain wary of possible dangers. An early warning can save you from a disaster.
There are countless reasons as to why a mentor is needed, and to be formal, it might not even be the most formal mentorship process. In a coworking space, there are lots of people who have already had startup experience. To save your time and money, it would be the best idea to find your next mentor or just someone to bounce ideas with at a coworking space! Take a tour today.