How to bridge the start-up, scale-up divide

Here's how to bridge the start-up, scale-up gap, one step at a time.

We’ve heard and read all the great stories about how run of the mill start-ups stayed the course and became mega successes. We’ve heard them say stuff like “I acted hungrily and stayed hungry.” Not to rain on their parade, but that’s just a lot of mumbo-jumbo that doesn’t really tell you how to make the leap from a measly start-up to a mega money-raking grown-up.

It’s been documented that nine out of ten start-ups fail. Terrifying odds right? These odds are even worse in my line of work- the motor industry. When I started out all I had was a motor trade insurance and a few “vintage” cars.  Now I have a fleet of cars and quite a good number of employees not to mention amazing profit margins. Wondering how I did it? Read on.

Delegate duties

We’ve been fooled to believe that people cost more than the money they bring in. But without people, you’ll never get anything done. In most cases, in the start-up phase, you’ll be running a one-man show which is very tasking, to say the least. As such your productivity will be nothing to write home about. To make the leap to a grown-up phase you have to rid yourself of old misnomers and hire more people. While I know you’ll be skeptical of whether they will be able to get things right it’s a worthy gamble to take. Plus you’ll be around to show them the ropes. This way you’ll have time to focus on the really important issues.

Pick your battles wisely

I have seen many start-ups get wrapped in the most trivial things like a logo at the expense of other talking issues. Why beat yourself up on the colour of your logo when you could be using that time to nab more clients. After all, you could always change the logo at a later point when the current one outlives its utility. Don’t go swatting mosquitoes when on the hunt for the big game!

Win over your haters

Perhaps the biggest problem plaguing every start-up is how to make your business known. The gateway way to raking in the big bucks is finding a way to divert attention to your company your idea and most importantly you. The late great Muhammad Ali had this to say “I was the greatest long before anyone knew me.” As much as this bold statement rubbed a lot of people the wrong way it still got him the attention he needed. And when all eyes were on him he proved himself winning over his critics. This is the way to go with your startup. Get critics. Gain their attention. Deliver a noteworthy performance and gain their admiration.

Learn how to effectively pitch your business

Rather than saying “I own a delivery service company,” why not add a bit of flare and say “My delivery service company is like no other. We guarantee your packages are delivered within a moment’s notice!” Notice how the second pitch touts its claims eloquently hooking the client. You should be able to sell yourself as better than the next man.

Praseeda Nair

Praseeda Nair

Praseeda was Editor for from 2016 to 2018.

Related Topics

Business Scaling Strategy