As a founder, you probably dedicate quite a lot of your time to look for ways to improve your product and services. Knowing that, we separated a list of 5 simple resources for startups innovation to help you out. And it won’t even take more than 10 minutes!
Maslow’s and your employees’ needs
‘Maslow’s who?’ you may ask. In case you’ve never heard about Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, it’s a motivational theory that classifies different human needs and organizes them as below:
What’s important to understand from this theory is that individuals must fulfill their previous level of needs before going to the next one.
In a management position, you need to pay attention to the top level of this pyramid and think about how your company can affect, improve and escalate your employees in the hierarchy of needs.
This theory will help you understand what are those needs and develop strategies to keep your staff motivated and retain the best ones!
After all, building a great team is a huge factor for startup success and not having the right one is among the main factors for its failure.
If you wanna know which are the other factors, check out our video about the Top 5 reasons startups fail and how to avoid them!
Keep the projects on track
A startup is run like a research and development team since you are always looking for the next project.
And to keep track of your projects a practical and simple technique we recommend is the Roadmap. It’s a planning technique that combines long and short-term projects in a flexible way.
Besides making things clear and organized about the current project, the roadmap also demonstrates that you keep an eye in the future when talking to customers and investors.
The main benefits in a Roadmap are:
- helps to find common ground about the needs and the technologies required;
- helps to forecast technology developments;
- and, it provides a framework to help plan and coordinate technology developments.
And the good news is that we do have the tool to help you out keeping your project on track and not waste your time in complicated processes.
Download here the SMART Goal Spreadsheet and start planning your next steps.
In case you’re having difficulties to find inspiration for the next steps, consider checking customers’ reviews for ideas and the market’s needs!
Not your average alphabet soup
How do you know if investors are in it for a quick buck, or if they really want to be a part of startups innovation process? The expectations of your investors for your EBITDA can speak volumes.
EBITDA stands for earnings, before interests, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. In a nutshell, it’s just a way to know how profitable a business is in its current operations.
If the investors want to have a growth percentage within the next year, they are definitely in it for short-term benefits.
If they want to increase the market share by 20% to 30% in the next 10 years, now that’s a real opportunity for innovation!
Building a client base
If you are not familiar with the Technology Adoption Life Cycle, aka Moore’s Chasm, our next recommendation is that you do so.
In his theory, Geoffrey Moore separated consumers in different groups according to their acceptance and adoption of new technologies, from the innovators to the laggards, the very first clients to the latest ones.
Pretty much, Moore tries to explain and enlighten companies about the steps in each stage, being the most difficult the transition from innovators to the early majority, which means that the product got market’s validation.
Once you validate your theory and your product in the initial stages of your startup, you have proven your idea works and the target is reached, go ahead and move on to the Proof of Concept (POC).
The POC is evidence of the feasibility of a project and what are the next steps, once it proves to be successful. In this case, the next step could be building your Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
The MVP is the product with the minimum features to reach the market and provide you with real customers’ feedback. Since it’s still an early stage, we advise to not spend a large amount of your budget on it.
But the important thing here is to continuously feed your idea with the contributions of your team members, and prove to your clients that you can do what you promised.
Go to a bigger market, set new targets, start the process of internationalization, for example.
Startups innovation is a process
It takes a good plan, combined with research, skilled people with the passion and determination to make it happen.
The fact that you are here is just the beginning and what about starting this journey with the right foot? Subscribe to our newsletter and get the non-tech founder checklist to give the first steps towards innovation.