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Jul 16 2013
"The Cart Before the Horse"

Blog: “The Cart Before the Horse”
Carol Glynn

So often our aspiring entrepreneurs walk into our Blackstone LaunchPad thinking they need to immediately start searching for funders for their business. When this happens, I talk about other funding alternatives (bootstrapping, crowdfunding , friends and family, small business loans, etc.), but then I also suggest that they may want to step back and possibly think about resequencing their milestone priorities. After all, time is valuable and money is scarce especially when you are starting out---so setting a logical sequence of priorities is critical to initial success. I then point to the words “customer validation” that I wrote on the wall several months ago and I proceed with a healthy discussion about why those two words are so relevant to a start up. I suggest that they validate their business model first which requires testing the market and nailing down some basics: what price will customers “actually” pay for your product or service? While I never want to discourage anyone from going forward with their business, I reiterate that it would be a waste of time to present to potential funders who are looking for revenue streams (both past and in the pipeline) as well as scalable business models before they will even consider investing.

Do you really want to be the horse pulling the cart which is heavy because of unsold inventory? After all, the horse(s) and their offspring must be fed in the future.


2 Comments so far | Skip to comment form

Denise Kulak July 16, 2013 at 01:59 pm

This is the advice that I received before I started my business and I have to say it was the most valuable. Also, figuring out how to start with your own resources and building one step at a time helps to build confidence in yourself and prove to others that you are serious and willing to have and risk your own "skin" in the game.

Scott July 22, 2013 at 01:52 pm

Those two words are definitely an eye-opener to see if you truly have a market for your product or service.

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