Month 1: Entrepreneurship 101 and new ideas

4 month challenge - launch your startup in 4 months with FES Agency! Over the course of 4 months we will share with you tools and tips to launch your business! Are you ready to take the leap?

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According to Steve Blank, the serial entrepreneur and the creator of the Customer Development Methodology (more in the weeks to come), a startup is: “an organization formed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model.”

For the first time in history, we can now build global companies from day one and serve millions of users with a relatively small operation. This is only possible because of the use of technology.

Let’s look at some numbers:

Facebook is one of the biggest companies in the world by market capitalization, and it employs less than 65.000 people. It seems to be a lot. But if you look at Walmart, it is also one of the biggest companies in the world, but it employs 2.3 million people. 2.3 MILLION PEOPLE. What is the difference? Technology and a super scalable business model!! 

So when we are talking about startups, technology, and a scalable business model are key. And this also influences the kind of investment or finance you will get.

As you are building a new startup, it’s super important to start by identifying and analyzing the problem to be solved (as well as its causes). You can start by answering the following questions:

  • What is the central problem to be solved?
  • Who suffers most from the identified problem? What is your target group?
  • How big is the problem?
  • What are the main causes you want to address?
  • Are there alternative solutions that seek to minimize the effects of the problem? If so, what is the dominant one?
  • Why is the dominant solution not solving the problem?

Tasks to get you started:

  1. Watch the following videos on Udacity:
    Lesson 1: What We Now Know 
  2. Reach out to two entrepreneurs in your area and ask them about their experiences. Try to understand their biggest challenges and how they overcome them.

Do you already have an idea?

If we had a dollar for every time people ask us where good ideas come from, we would be RICH!!! There is even a book exactly with that title! You should read it!! A few things we learned from working with hundreds of entrepreneurs over the past few years:

  1. Good ideas come from real problems entrepreneurs face. We all have things in our lives that we find challenging. Some find it hard to connect with friends online, so they create Facebook, others find it hard to rent their air mattresses, so they build Airbnb, and the list goes on. Look at your life and find the problems that you want to solve. 
  2. It’s super easy to fall in love with an idea. You wake up in the morning after dreaming about what you think is a billion-dollar idea, and then you try to convince everyone that you have an amazing idea. Find a problem worth solving, fall in love with it, and find the best way to solve it.
  3. Ideas are almost worthless. It’s all about executing! This was probably one of our biggest learnings. People spend so much time looking for the perfect idea, and then nothing happens. Flawless execution and a great team are essential. 
  4. And finally, don’t hesitate to share with the world what you are thinking about. Reach out to other entrepreneurs, family, friends, and others and ask for honest feedback. 

Tasks to get you started:

  1. Watch the following videos at Udacity:
    Lessons 2: Business Models and Customer Development
    Lesson 3: Value Proposition
    Lesson 4: Customer Segments
  2. Fill out your Business Model Canvas. Use the canvanizer if you prefer a digital tool.

A lot to do and so little time! So let’s get to work!

See you next month!


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