Failure in the startup space is unfortunately a very real possibility. Forbes this year reported that 90% of startups fail. This is a rising proportion – as more and more enter the startup space, chance of survival is further reduced.
For an entrepreneur to succeed in the face of high competition and a volatile market it is important to understand these fears and remain connected to the market. A startup needs to recognize their unique offering, to identify the demand for this opportunity, and to be an expert in their industry in touch with changing market trends. This will better position a leader for successes.
Market research firm CB Insights reported the leading cause of failure in 85% of failed companies as arrogance. This drove entrepreneurs to push products with no demand, at the wrong time, with a lack of business model and network of advisors.
The fear of failure is not something to be ignored. Entrepreneurs need to listen to their instincts, be adaptive to changing business climates and continue to evolve their offering. The startup jungle is unruly, developing a smart strategy to overcome obstacles and continue growth differentiates the winners.
We spoke to 4 successful startup founders to discover their key learnings for overcoming the fear of failure and driving success in a competitive world.
1. Harness This Energy.
“You will never be able to overcome your fear of failure. What you can do is manage it by controlling your mindset, and the way in which you approach problems. You can harness this fear for positive outcomes. Using this to bring strength to your work is a great way to remain connected to your market and develop a great offering.”
Ali Benmoussa, Searchub
2. Understand Your Market And Future Opportunities.
“Alway look 6 months in front, never at the situation now. Success indicators such as revenue are lagging, it’s best to focus on lead generation in the beginning for validation – the compare the growth month over month. Look at the number of conversations, and interest too. Record this information and examine the types of conversations you are having – what is your market asking for – can you provide this. It is essential your growth in inline with industry demand. Through understanding your customer needs and experiences you can better comprehend the opportunities you have.”
Jason Hamilton-Mascioli, Testlauncher
3. Keep Creating.
“A fear of failure is a normal thing, however the desire to be successful has to be bigger, especially when building a startup. As they say, “when you are older you will not regret the things you did, rather those you did not.”
Sergio Torres, Blackartel
4. Accept You Cannot Control It.
“Almost every great pivot by a successful business started with a failure. Don’t be afraid of failure, embrace it for the opportunities it can present you with.”
Jon Stolmeier, HappAppily
As a leader adapting those aspects within your control will put you at a competitive advantage. Maintaining a strong attitude and keeping connected to the market will ensure a leader understands the demand. Don’t get arrogant, get strategic, you will be in a far better position to roll with the blows of tough business.