Launching a Startup has been compared to having a baby, to crossing a desert, and to eating glass. The last one comes from the famous founder of PayPal, Tesla, and SpaceX – Elon Musk.

It’s not easy.

If you’re thinking about it, or have already started that difficult journey, the following advice might just make the difference between success and failure for your fledgling company.

1. Get Lots of Feedback – Elon Musk

Elon Musk didn’t magically get where he is today by chance. His business strategy has gone against what most people consider the norm, and he has taken some huge risks. When launching his first four space rockets, he ran out of money on the last attempt and had to borrow from friends to pay the rent. Bold and audacious as he is, he stresses the value of good feedback.

“Take as much feedback from as many people as you can about whatever idea you have…seek critical feedback. Ask them what’s wrong. You often have to draw it out in a nuanced way to figure out what’s wrong,”

2. Hedge Your Bets – Tim Ferriss

We all know that starting a business is a risk, no matter who you are, or what you’re selling. Many people won’t dream of becoming an entrepreneur simply because they don’t want to take a risk.

Successful startups do come with risk – but the secret lies in how you manage that risk. Tim Ferriss embraces the risk, but never acts recklessly. His multi-million dollar online enterprise was built by hedging each bet, minimizing risks, and taking all the necessary precautions before jumping in.

“The fact of the matter is, most of the uber-successful entrepreneurs I know hedge their bets and place small bets while keeping one foot on secure ground.”

“You jump off a cliff and you assemble an airplane on the way down.” – Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn co-founder

3. Focus on One Thing Only: The Customer – Bill Gates

In the end, the success or failure of your startup depends on just one factor – whether or not people want to buy what you’re selling. Keeping your end-customer in mind is probably the best bit of advice any new startup can take to heart.

That means really listening to your customers – the good ones and the bad ones.

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” Bill Gates, Microsoft co-founder


Section Two has helped startups overcome some of these basic challenges by their unrelenting attention to detail, and their wholehearted, customer-centric approach. We would love to help your startup thrive – so take a look at our services page to see how we could help you.