According to Clint Eastwood’s iconic character Dirty Harry, “A man’s got to know his limitations.” The same is true for a startup. In the early days of a new venture, most of your efforts should be focused on productizing your technology, and most of your people should have skills relevant to this task. However, there are always other activities that need to be completed, and other areas of expertise that are needed for good decision making. Launching the startup in the right ecosystem can help fill the gap between what you’ve got and what you need.
Many new ventures need funding to get off the ground. Before you get that big check, you need to 1) know how much you actually need 2) identify the most appropriate sources of funding 3) prepare a clear, concise & compelling pitch and 4) deliver the pitch in a captivating manner.
From its founding in 1965, UCI has advanced to earn the distinction of best university in the United Sates under 50 years old, according to Times Higher Education. The University has may resources for the new venture including potential employees and interns from top rated disciplines like engineering, computer science, medicine and business. The university also offers research partnerships and a wealth of networking opportunities including the recently opened Cove as the cornerstone of UCI’s Institute for Applied Innovation.
Many startup founders have technical expertise in their chosen fields, but often needs assistance with all of the business issues that are needed to transform a proof of concept into a thriving venture. What will be your sales and marketing strategy? How will you find and hire world class employees? Where should you locate your business?
Every company needs help. Lawyers, bookkeeping, human resources, insurance, public relations, tax preparation, and more. How will you find the service providers best suited for your company, without taking precious time away from the development of your core business capabilities?
Startups are usually rich with innovation, but very limited in resources. Corporate enterprises are the opposite, often rich with resources but limited in innovation. Win-win partnerships can be established when a startup learns to leverage the resources of a corporate giant and the corporation relies on the startup to accelerate the rate of innovation.
One of the hardest things to know, is what you don’t know. Every venture will have its own specific hurdles to overcome. How well prepared are you for the unknown? How well will you react to the unexpected? Will you be ready to pounce when opportunity presents itself?