Startup Problems — Perfection

Usually, when starting a new business, a lot of thought must go into it. You need a good idea, you need a good business model, you need talented and hardworking individuals, you need a perfect startup. However, Charlie Harary from Entrepreneur talks about how “perfection is the greatest obstacle to productivity.” Perfection is usually the first thing wanted in any business, so why is it one of the biggest obstacles?

One of the biggest problems with striving for perfection might be the time it takes up. When you spend so many resources and hours coming up with a business, you want your product to be the best it can possibly be. Sure, you can take your time, find a small shortcoming, and fix that. You will keep doing this and before you know it, you will have exhausted all your finances and the clientele will be tired of waiting and move on. A good solution for this is to release a minimal viable product for a few people to test it out and based on reviews make necessary adjustments and you will have your new product, without exhausting your time and finance.

Pricing models are important too. What a lot of founders tend to do is base their valuation on how the world will be in the future. While this sounds nice, it’s not a realistic model to have. Evidence suggests investors have been happy to go along with this fantasy, with the average pre-money Series A valuation more than doubling over the past five years, from approximately $8 million to $17 million. Sales Cycles are no longer able to be expected, customers aren’t loyal and products can very well tend to fail one day. So, after 9 to 12 months of falling short of perfect, from living in the real world, the next fundraising round comes in at a lower valuation.

Startup founders have boundless ambition. To succeed, a startup needs to become world class at something that a large group of customers value. Some of the most scaling startups like Twitter, Dropbox, Groupon etc, didn’t start with where they are today, they started off small. They slowly broadened their platform to include an even wider audience. However, they are very far from perfect, and still have room to improve. Startups success are dependent on focus and prioritization. A student can become a world class football player, but he/she would have to practice a few hours of day and train their bodies, but they wouldn’t also be able to also become a world class piano player. They would have to focus and prioritize on which skill set to focus on.

In conclusion, “startups should just strive for making their products as good as they can really be, which, more often than not, it’s very far from perfect, says Eric Paley, managing partner at the founder collective, in VentureFizz. Achieving perfection is nearly impossible and you will never approach this achievement without sufficient time and talent.

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