When you’re in start-up mode, the choice to go after investment funds is a big decision. I’ve been there and know that it’s exciting, but it can be overwhelming as well. That decision to pursue is often followed by an intense period of honing a vision, a mission, and a business plan. Once funding is secured though, the CEO must pivot quickly to new goals, mainly, how to strategically use that money to make more.
Move the needle
It can be easy to waste seed funding, unfortunately. Because we are entrepreneurs, we love to follow new ideas, so it might be tempting to start experimenting with a few that were not in the first plan. Be careful. Commit to your original ideas, and invest in specific, foundational activities that have a visible, measurable outcome. Invest incrementally in publicity (announcing good news) and marketing, which is your content strategy. They are like the lifeblood, or the fuel in your car. Raising awareness of what you’re up to is a simple way to lay the groundwork for partnerships and brand enthusiasts, and both will help move the needle in the right direction and strengthen your foundation.
Innovate, with guidance
The exciting thing about innovation is that it is in our DNA as entrepreneurs! It means that even though we are holding ourselves to a plan, we can come up with many lateral moves and creative interpretations for how to execute our plans. Don’t be shy of sharing or asking for feedback from others who know about your type of business. Early on, I spoke with others who ran a drone business who shared this: hire a chief of staff sooner rather than later and build your company today the way you want it to be operational in 5 years from today. In other words, think big and keep looking at the horizon. So far, this has proven to be wise investment advice.
Build, build, build
Build your team, build your trust, and build your enthusiasm. I can’t stress the importance of investing in a talented team you can trust. It is a basic investment that will return many times over. Talented people, oftentimes those over 45, bring a diverse skillset, so someone you hired to do web development may also have talents in boosting social media visibility. Compensating talented people is important and you don’t want to take advantage and burn out good people. If you learn about New Work principles, you can gain some ideas about ways to attract and manage a great team. That team you trust will help you relax, support and challenge you, and help you bring your vision to fruition, which is a great way to invest in your business.
Less is more
This speaks for itself, but a few high-quality tools are better than loads of cheap things. It can be small business management software that keeps financials organised or it may be the actual machinery, technology, or hardware used to power your business. I would rather have two or three drones that are capable of withstanding difficult conditions and temperatures than a fleet of drones that are inexpensive and unreliable. Investing in a few great tools will make your day more enjoyable, which is important, too!