In business it’s good to have a routine, whether is a weekly newsletter, Monday morning announcements or midweek progress updates. This keeps you in check and it gives the team a structure to work around.

At my company I ran a scrum meeting every morning, to make sure everyone knew what was going on in the day, and also to find out what everyone was working on and what work issues they had. We also had a monthly finance review, a weekly business plan up and many other routines. These structures and routines need to fit around your idea of a good working day for your company. They will provide you with ways to become prepared for each stage of your progress and help you handle the challenges ahead.

One of the biggest challenges we had was keeping to the goals we’d set ourselves. This was because, firstly, our goals were not SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely), they were closer to ‘SMT’, meaning they were not realistic and were slightly unachievable. The second issue was that we got distracted and tempted by other ventures for the company along the way. It was tough to stick to our goals but I believe we did our best, and over time we managed to evolve our goals into SMART goals. The challenge is knowing which opportunities are right for your startup company and which are not. I found that the hardest challenge was to stay focused, and keep my eyes on one goal. But having a business partner to bounce ideas off of will help you stay focused on your true vision for the company.

Another challenge is last minute deal changes, which normally only happens if you are creating business to business deals. I recommend you don’t take on too many business to business deals as they are bad practice for the company’s working rhythm. We had a really bad experience when my business partner was building a very good deal with a potential new client, and at the last negotiation meeting they changed their terms completely, and we had to walk away from the deal. This was very detrimental to our sales pipeline.

A further challenge you’ll have to face, along with every other employer, is how to deal with staff. You want to reward and praise your staff for their hard work, but you have to maintain your authority as the boss – they are not bigger than the company. But how do you manage badly performing staff? We had to face that challenge, too. If you have a member of staff who is not contributing, damaging the business or wasting your time, you must take action. I’m not saying you should get rid of them immediately, but you need address the issue head on. But once you’ve found a way to reward your staff and keep them in line at the same time – which will take time – you’ll be part of a good team working towards a shared goal.

If you are interested in starting your own startup company, I sincerely encourage you to consider what I have discussed in the series, especially in part one. This blog will be dedicated to startups and entrepreneurship. Over the coming weeks I will get guest writers, entrepreneurs who started different types of startup companies, to help give you an insight to what it takes to create a business and the human journey behind it. Finally, I would love to read your thoughts and feedback, so please leave comments. If you want to be kept up to date with the latest news from the site, please subscribe to the RSS or mailing list.

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