Tips to build a successful startup ecosystem

There is a huge excitement about emerging startup ecosystems. As per the Kauffman Foundation report, in the US, “new businesses account for nearly all net new job creation and almost 20 percent of gross job creation.”

One major concern is however, the sustainability of the startup ecosystems being created. We have to find out ways to tackle this challenge.

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Here are some tips that will work, no matter where you are trying to build your startup ecosystem.

1. Start with a collaborative approach.
Startups are exciting mainly because of it’s ability to create new markets that never existed before. This kind of mentality is what helps to make the pie bigger for all. No one has to lose in order for you to win.

Sounds simple enough right? However, most of us are trained to take the traditional business approach of expanding your market share at the expense of others. This makes it hard to grasp the new collaborative approach.

Always remember, startup ecosystems that function with a “me-first” attitude DIE, and they die FAST!

2. Map the local startup resources available.
You should be aware of all the local startup organizations in your locality. Speaking to them will give you an idea of the local startup resources that are available. Most of us plot our startup in total secrecy mainly because we are afraid that someone will steal our ideas.

Ultimately what happens is that we miss out so many important things. We miss the local startup blogs, events, mentorship programs, or co-working spaces that are available right in front of us. What we need to understand is that networking is very important to build our startup.

Create a list of all local entities in your city that help startups: including networking events, co-working spaces, accelerators, incubators and more.

3. Bring together the network.
No matter what kind of startup market you are in, make it a point to host startup events. Make these events free and public in the beginning. Your main aim is to build a network for the success of your startup. Attend all such events too. These events often create a platform for you to learn so many lessons from local startup experts. Create a dais to share ideas, make connections and become inspired. You can also get feedback on your startup ideas from the local experts. You can host these events on a platform like Meetup where local people can find your events and attend.

Remember, everyone are NOT trying to steal your ideas!

4. Collaborate with your government
Connect with the Chamber of Commerce in your city and learn what they have to offer for startups and small businesses. You can work with your government to get at least a small amount of funding for networking events with big speakers. The local government organizations and officials can do a lot to help build your startup.

5. Be Honest
You must rate your company only based on proper metrics. Most startups make the mistake of grading themselves based on the other startups in the locality. Just because your company is ahead of your local competition does not mean that you are doing well. Use proper metrics and brutally honest reviews from your customers.

Just concentrate on creating a strong startup. Most entrepreneurs will tell you from their experience that companies with good metrics will always get funding – whether from international investors, or through other means.

Focus on creating a strong startup ecosystem. The funding will follow, and a sustainable startup ecosystem can be formed.

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