What Your Established Business Will Learn from Adopting a Start Up Mentality

Start-up companies may get a lot of headlines related to company culture and their tech-savvy workforce, but these companies are also showing established businesses that the right mentality is key to success.

Consider the following successful start-up practices and how you might incorporate them into your established business.

Talk to Potential Customers

Due to their very nature, start-up companies must focus on the ideal product-market fit. The best approach to identifying a need is by reaching out to customers and prospective customers.

A start-up will stay in business if their product or service is an improvement on, or different from pre-existing solutions. This is not necessarily the case for an established company, as decision-makers tend to stick with established products and services. Hence, many traditional organizations are still capable of making good profits, and yet plod along inadvertently into becoming outdated.

Keeping an Open Mind

People involved with a start-up have a greater tendency to question established methods. They are also more likely to revisit old and rejected ideas. This tendency is less common in established businesses, where ideas are more likely to be shut down before being given a chance.

If a business can change its frame of mind, it can open itself up to better processes and solutions. An effective innovation program considers all ideas and has a system to revisit them down the road when they might be more relevant and viable.

Seeing Change as a Necessity

Unfortunately, many companies are only now beginning to acknowledge disruptions that are shifting their industry.

In contrast to start-ups that are forward-facing and evolving quickly, established businesses often find it hard to stay nimble while grappling with on-going business concerns. The threat of an industry disruption can seem remote to established companies but ignoring looming disruption can have dire consequences.

Take a Problem-Solving Approach

The best start-ups concentrate on a problem and then use or create the technology to realize a solution. Conversely, established businesses will often adopt flashy new technology because they have the resources to do so, and then look for a way to solve issues or streamline operations with this new tool.

A current example is machine learning and artificial intelligence. An established organization that does not have a clear vision of what it wants to achieve through AI will have a hard time getting a significant return on investment.

Moreover, many businesses waste time and resources on multiple simultaneous digital transformation projects. A more successful approach is settling on one or two projects before starting new ones.

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