It’s not all about the idea – success factors for a startup

DBH Seedstar at March 24, 2016

There are a lot of great ideas which changed the world, or placed a company on the Unicorn list.  Maybe you have your own revolutionary idea(s), you are going to be considered as the next Steve Jobs and the world is never going to be the same again after you launched the company of your dreams. But is it just about the idea? We have good and bad news for you.

  • No, it is not: the idea will not make profit just by itself.
  • And no, it is not: the idea is just one element of a complex system – which is called company, so you don’t need to own the world’s greatest thought to create a Story of Success.

After you considered the factors of being an entrepreneur, you should take a look at what matter concerning the success of a startup company.

success factors startup


Of course this is the first element one should take into consideration when speaking of a startup company – although it’s really only a small component of how things might turn out. Consider Google, whose core idea of an interactive web search was, at its start, already being implemented by a lot of competitors. But because Google’s plan, execution and timing were unique, their lack of originality didn’t cripple their chances of success.

The team

Entrepreneurs are important, but they rarely accomplish great things alone. Successful businesses employ and gather people in a team, who will and can be the ones maintaining the business, driving innovation and executing your high-level goals. Hire the right people for the job, and you’ll never have a problem. Hire the wrong people and your best-laid plans might be ruined.


Leaders make the decisions, set the vision and inspire people to work harder for the group’s goals. Put an incompetent leader in place, and not only will high-level decisions be made less effectively, but the morale of the group could be put in jeopardy. On the other hand, a skilled and experienced leader can turn even a weak idea into a successful one.


The plan

You should have a consistent business plan (containing marketing -, operational -, sales -, financial plan) supplemented with the description of your product/service, your customers, the competition and the market trends. Otherwise you wouldn’t make strategic decisions effectively, and your chances to get capital investment would decrease significantly.

The execution

That being said, a plan is only as valuable as its ability to be executed. If you have a nice plan without the ability and the background to execute it well, your entire enterprise could be compromised. On the other hand, if you have an adequate plan and execute it perfectly, you’ll have a solid leg to stand on and a key understanding of what did and didn’t work from your original concept.

Timing and location

Timing is quite important concerning a startup company. If you have a great idea, a brilliant business model, a talented team and more than enough funding; but your idea comes too early and consumers aren’t ready for it, they won’t readily adopt your system. Or if your idea comes too late and there are already a number of different competitors in front of your target audience, you won’t be able to squeeze in.

But this could happen inversely: you could have an OK, but not great idea, a business model with a few holes, a few dedicated people who don’t know exactly what they’re doing and barely enough funding to keep the lights on. But if your release is timed perfectly, people have a strong need for your idea, they’re ready for it and you’ve come along before anybody else has, then you could reach a lot of success.

Concerning location, you should find an environment, where standards are higher, people are more sympathetic to what you’re doing, the kind of people you want to hire want to live there, supporting industries are there and the people you run into in chance meetings are in the same business.

funding strategy

Funding Strategy

On the one hand when the time comes to raise money for your startup it is important to get to know potential funders before you ask for money; and to build relationships with those who show interest.

On the other hand as a founder, you have to manage your investors.  You shouldn’t ignore them, because they may have useful insights. Gaining the respect and enthusiasm of your investors increases the amount that these advocates will evangelize your company in their respective circles of influence. Your investors can be your greatest salespeople if you leverage them correctly. At last but not at least, you should consider the right amount of investment you need.


All of the stakeholders of your company would like to see growth, because this is the source of which you’re going to pay your employees, this is from which your investors can get their expected return, and this is how you can develop your business. The path you choose toward growth plays a significant role in how you end up. Grow too fast and you’ll stretch yourself thin. Grow too slowly and you’ll never get anywhere. So, find a balance, and treat your growth with caution.

Do you need some guidance to reach every success factors?

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