Remember, starting your own company is a marathon, not a sprint

November 19, 2014

The corporate world is filled with clichés, but there are some worth paying attention to. Particularly if you do something drastic like start your own company.

They say that life isn’t a sprint — it’s a marathon. That idea can apply to several areas of life and business. If you are starting your own company, it’s important to keep this in mind. It might help guide your organizations to greater long-term success.

It won’t always be easy to follow this advice. You want to experience success as soon as your business opens its doors for the first time. Statistics show that 80 percent of these endeavors fail within their first 18 months, so if you feel you aren’t getting off to a fast start, panic might set in. While it’s certainly important to experience some success early on, it’s much more important to position yourself for long-term success.

An article in Forbes addresses this, but rather than suggesting every entrepreneur purposely go at a slow pace, it stresses readers to go at their own pace, and to know when to speed things up and slow down, which ultimately is the same way runners approach a marathon.

“This doesn’t mean that you have to take it slow. Rather that you need to dictate the pace that works best for you and your company,” writes Kyle Wong, the article’s author. “For instance, you might want to average a 10 minute mile, but there should be different places you choose to speed up or slow down. Each startup has sprints during their lifespan. Feature releases, fundraising meetings, big client meetings, etc. but they all come at different times that are unique to each company and market. Just because other companies have started hiring, fundraising, or had a press release doesn’t mean you have to be doing the same thing.”                                                                                                         
You may want to start moving right away, but you have to ensure you are properly set up to succeed before opening your doors. Learning how to incorporate is an essential element of the startup process that will allow you to get your business in order before you open.