Entrepreneurs constantly set out to disrupt markets and revolutionize the business world. When they have a new idea or vision, all they want to do is see it come to fruition. It’s hard for them to slow down.
As a startup advisor, services provider, or investor, it’s important to remind these eager entrepreneurs to play the long game because no idea is built overnight.
Soft vs. Hard Value
It’s no surprise startup founders want to see immediate results. They want to see if their product or service is successful or will be successful. As founders take the big step of launching their company, they are likely going to focus on the hard value. However, getting lost in the numbers in the early stages of their business will only show success in the short term. Tunnel vision on profitability and return on investment (ROI) will lead to underperformance in the future.
You may be asking why. Isn’t this what determines a business’s success? Of course, startups need to manage their ROI, profitability, and growth, but those numbers won’t positively change if they aren’t able to retain customers, network with other business professionals and maintain a good reputation.
What Can You Do?
Soft value is just as important as hard value for a startup because it drives the relationship side of the business. As an advisor or venture capitalist, you are in a position where you can offer soft value to your portfolio companies and teach them what it means to play the long game. These soft values include supporting them and their businesses by opening them up to your network, being accessible and available, providing market and competitive intelligence, and being up-to-date on their latest news and announcements.
By providing soft value, you are able to build stronger, longer-lasting relationships with your portfolio companies. In return, your portfolio will focus less on immediate results and more on playing the long game, knowing they have someone on their team supporting them every step of the way as they build out their business.
Learn how you can use the York IE Fuel Platform to support your startup portfolio.