The real challenge for startups begins AFTER this crisis - are you prepared?
Updated: Jun 13, 2020
You will get through this crisis, especially if you’re a VC-funded startup. But are you sure that investors will still fund you at some point in the next 12-18 months?
Your day-to-day probably hasn’t changed much, beyond having your employees work from home. And why should it change? You’re doing exactly what your investors (those who are paying your bills and salaries) want you to do: build out your team and processes, deliver a poc, create a commercialisation roadmap, get some revenues, etc.
If you deliver on all this, you are certain that you will secure the next round of funding.
Or at least, you could be certain of that UNTIL now. But covid-19 is changing that.
Investors are going to get more critical about who gets funded and who doesn't after the crisis.
So you’ll need to work harder to stand out from other startups. And I’m not just talking about your close competitors - all startups in your area will be competing for the money of more selective investors.
And it will not be the difference between raising a £7-million or a £5-million Series B round - it will be the difference between raise money or go home.
You can’t change this.
So an interesting question that you want to ask yourself is: what actions can you take to drive KPIs in the months affected by coronavirus, and how do they differ from the actions you were otherwise planning to take?
For example, most of the companies I advise were looking to sign big clients, then the crisis hit and those deals are now “on hold”.
How do you unlock those big deals, if they’re unmovable in their decision to “wait and see” and you can’t go out to meet them and persuade them?
You probably can’t unlock those deals.
But what you can do is shift your focus: instead of trying to make a few deals, build a large pipeline of deals, big and small. You’ll find that many prospects are happy to have an exploratory chat right now. So you can take your time, nudge many deals close to the finish line, and be ready to sign them as soon as things go back to normal.
If it’s vital for your business to demonstrate traction with customers sooner, you may choose to pursue LOIs - but don’t make prospects jump through extra hoops during these times, unless you absolutely have to.
What can -you- do now?
The above is a common example from the companies I advise, so hopefully you’ll find these ideas useful for yourself, too. But maybe you have different challenges.
Message me or click here to schedule a chat, if you are curious to know how I’d solve your specific challenges. The call is 100% free and don’t worry: thanks to social distancing, I don’t bite :)