Greg left a paid job at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia to launch a product related startup 18 months ago, and yes, he had sales early on. Just not enough to please a robust P&L or get a return on capital invested.
Greg had met all the right and at times the wrong people to support him in startups.
He’d read all the books, been to the seminars, watched markets, researched, built websites and social media channels, done all the copy, the pitching, the late nights packing product, run market stalls, managed outsourced teams and in the end, it had become overwhelming and exhausting.
Greg and I describe startups as an emotional journey of holding on and letting go at the same time.
Founders often read about success stories, the fitness app that made $342 million or the tech startup now worth a billion. So, it’s confronting both personally and professionally to close your own business or startup but, as I said to Greg, it’s the smart thing to do and far from a failure.
Greg had had a number of recent challenges, a rainstorm had destroyed his uninsured stock, the expensive website was not converting (no sales), the bank said no to any further investment and the list went on.
So with all the challenges he phoned me and said,
“I’m quitting my startup – what do you think about that?”
I never like to be too pessimistic so, we went through how we might turn it around.
I’ll set out below some of the questions that I asked him which may help you decide whether it’s worth putting more resources, time and effort into your startup.
Where are the sales are coming in from could you double down on that revenue?
You mentioned your developer built a plugin app that has the potential to bring in money – could you launch that and earn on each download?
Can you pitch to investors, they may save your business?
Are you turning enough sales to cover costs?
Are you willing to work doubly hard on no pay for another 6 months?
Can you resell the stock and recover some costs?
Can you pivot the business?
These questions were the real decider.
Do you wake up excited every day?
Do you just need to press pause for a while?
Out of all the lessons you’ve learned, how have you developed as a person and does this match your current business?
These are just some of the questions we covered and although there was some money coming into the business Greg and I decided that it’s time to sell the stock and shut up shop.
Having the courage to close down a business is not a failure by any means.
It’s simply an opportunity to close that door and start again.
wordpress theme by initheme.com