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           Entrepreneurship has always fascinated me. The idea that one can start something from scratch and be there at the top is incredibly powerful, but also an impossible task for some people. Luckily, there are many more entrepreneurs who have been successful in their ventures, and they continue to give back by offering advice through various forms of media. One great example of this type of person is Steve Blank, a serial entrepreneur who gave a Ted Talk on how important it is to “get out of the building” when you’re developing your product or service. This philosophy is used today by countless startups worldwide, including Buffer

            Another example would be Eric Ries. His book The Lean Startup popularized a methodology referred to as “Start – Stop – Continue”. This methodology is designed to help determine which of your processes need more development and those that do not. This has been especially effective at helping startups develop their MVP ( Minimum Viable Product) and iterate until they reach a market fit, or something close to it.

            For those looking for some good advice on how to keep the momentum going, I recommend diving into anything by Marc Andreesen. Whether you take his advice with a grain of salt or not, he’s one of the most successful startup founders out there. He was involved in the creation of Netscape, which is used today as inspiration for countless products by large companies like Facebook & Twitter.

Startups are all unique in many ways; their goals, ideas, plans, and so much more. However, there are a few things that need to be discussed in order for these startups to have any hope of success. Ultimately, the advice I will list out in this article is merely one man’s opinion on what he has seen work previously.

            First and foremost: Do not become a slave to your idea. Many entrepreneurs fall into this trap when they realize how true it can be that your customers want something different than what you planned on providing them with initially. This is also where the Lean Startup methodology comes into play – it helps prevent entrepreneurs from wasting tons of time and money trying to convince people to use their product or service when there is no demand for it among their target audience.

            Second: Keep your customers close, and the competition closer. This is especially true for those who are trying to tackle a market with an existing leader already in place. It’s important that you stay on top of what they’re doing at all times; this includes everything from product releases to their prices, among other things. For example, Stripe, one of today’s leading payment processors (and based out of San Francisco) had some success due to the fact that it was able to integrate with another startup named Braintree very easily. This allowed more users to adopt the service immediately due to its compatibility with an existing solution – something that current market leader Authorize.net lacked at the time (they have since caught up through different means).

            Finally, you need to keep in mind that this is not your average 9-5. One of the most common misconceptions about entrepreneurship is that it’s “all fun and games” when in fact it requires an insane amount of dedication. If you’re doing something that you truly care about (like I believe everyone should), then it doesn’t feel like work at all; instead, it feels like your life isn’t complete without whatever project you’re working on. This is fine if you want to spend every waking moment working on the next big thing, but for some people, this can lead to burnouts or even worse – giving up entirely. Make sure there’s a balance between allocating time to work and time to yourself – it’s been proven that entrepreneurs who have a strong support system tend to succeed where others don’t because they have the basic human need for socializing met. In other words, do not isolate yourself from society!

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