7 Startup Tips and Tricks, in Honor of World Entrepreneurs’ Day
Today we celebrate World Entrepreneurs’ Day (WED). The primary purpose of this day is to raise awareness for entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership throughout the world. WED is the perfect occasion to offer some tips and tricks that we’ve discovered from working with startups and small businesses.
Through the JetBrains Startup Discount Program, which provides licenses for JetBrains tools to startup companies at a significantly discounted price, we’ve cultivated relationships with entrepreneurs in a variety of industries. Our discussions with them have provided us with insights about the diverse attitudes and strategies embraced by many of the most successful startups. In honor of WED, we have distilled these insights into a list of the 7 tips and tricks that we’ve found to be particularly useful to young companies.
1. Networking, networking, networking
One of the most important parts of spreading the word about your business is developing close relationships with the people who might be interested in what you do and how you do it. Regardless of whether they are potential customers or colleagues, staying in touch with your community is the key. Furthermore, these are the people giving reviews of your company. Don’t underestimate the power of word of mouth.
2. The advantage of flexibility
As a young company or small business, you have the huge advantage of being more flexible than colossal companies. It may be easier for you to make quick changes and pivot than it is for a large company with extensive decision workflows and guidelines.
3. Make a solid plan
The process of transforming an idea into a working solution requires having a detailed and thorough plan, as this allows you to define your goals and track your progress. But a solid plan doesn’t need to be written in stone, and in fact, the best plans can be updated to accommodate developing circumstances and new opportunities. Don’t hesitate to review your plan, and maybe even consider doing so on a regular basis.
4. Solutions over sales
Bringing an idea to life is a tremendous undertaking. We have learned from many successful startups that one of the keys to their success is their focus on how they help solve problems rather than what they sell. It’s way easier to gain a loyal customer base when your business is fixing a problem or is filling a gap in the market.
5. Small steps forward
No matter how big you think, the process of growing your business consists of many small steps. Setting two types of goals can help you balance this tension between the long term and the short term. You should distinguish between the overall goal for your business and the smaller goals that will help you attain it. It can help to group these smaller goals into milestones. Focusing on the milestone goals rather than the overall goal allows you to deliver your solution on time.
6. Balance passion with insight
Running a cutting-edge business depends on making the right decisions. Passion is definitely a good navigator, but the steering wheel should be also held by sagacity. Keeping a great balance between these two will lead to successful decision-making. Don’t be driven only by passion – combine it with your knowledge to achieve the best results.
7. Hone your elevator pitch
You should be able to describe what you do and how you can help solve someone’s problem in less than 30 seconds. Distill your startup’s mission into a few catchy sentences so you can immediately capture the attention of anyone who asks about your company.
Our support for young companies and small businesses doesn’t end with the insights we share in blog posts like this. We are also committed to giving back to the entrepreneurial community through the JetBrains Startup Discount Program. This program provides recently established companies with a 50% discount on up to 10 licenses for any number of JetBrains products and subscriptions over a 5-year period. More than 38,000 startups have already taken advantage of the JetBrains Startup Discount Program since we launched it in February 2014, and in this time we’ve worked hard to help startups evolve into self-sufficient companies that successfully deliver their products to customers.
At JetBrains, we are always working to make development a more productive and enjoyable experience. To this end, we are always interested in the stories our customers share with us. We are particularly delighted when we hear that our products have allowed JetBrains Startup Discount recipients to achieve their goals more efficiently. Skillaz, for example, is a young company that develops a full-cycle cloud hiring system, and their participation in the JetBrains Startup Discount Program since 2018 has increased the productivity of their entire team. You can find their story, along with the stories of many other companies who have embraced JetBrains products, on the Customer Stories page of our website.