Your Startup is a Project, Stop Calling it a Business

Lets call it a project or may be startup project, but not a business.

It might be an expensive project though; you might have spent your parent’s savings on it; those do not make that idea you are working on a business.

It is not yet a business until money starts changing hands, not just any fund but those that you need to account for such as revenue, external funding or any others.

Personally, measuring my startup ambitions as a project helps me to determine the amount of time or sacrifices that the startup is worthy of.

Calling a startup project a business would immediately put the worthwhile blanket and stamp on it.

For the purpose of clarity, so that many of us do not continue to deceive ourselves, shouldn’t startups be classified as startup business or startup projects based on the above?

This realization came to be again while I was discussing with my chartered accountant friend who has been following tech startups developments and love to be part of the ecosystem.

He approached me with a fantastic idea. The idea is to support (for free- no charge) startups in their early stage to manage their business finance, meet all statutory requirements with Companies House and HMRC and the provision of financial tax advice and other basic services, those services every small business on the high street will require from day one.

He proposed that the offering would be for early startups that can’t afford to pay for the above listed services because they have not either raised money or started trading.

While trying to find the sweet spot to ascertain whether or not there is a need for my friends offerings, we realized that most early startups do not really need this service per se.

Its either the offering is too small to justify a third party involvement such as registering for company name or that they do not really require it as there is no (calling it what is) No Business- No Trading — No Transacting and No Dealings.

When there is little or nothing to account for and no one or organization to be accountable to, then your startup is a project not a business.

However, compared with a similar structure on the high street, a typical small business with 1 to 3 employees (what we call founders in tech startup) the offering would be a hot cake, for the service is needed from day one.

I have personally looked at my startup as project.

But the question is, if someone comes to you and says: “I have a project and I want to quit my day job to pursue it”, would you take the person as serious as you would the other one that says: “I have a business”?

Long story short, we are still looking for the sweet spot where my Chartered- accountant and lover-of-tech friend’s offerings will be most useful within the early startups ecosystem.

Is your startup a project or a business?

Can you help find the sweet spot for my friend offerings?


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