Founding a new company is always a challenge. You need a good handle on the market, the ability to lead a diverse team, and of course good business management skills. A lot of startups have failed in the past, not because of the lack of opportunities, but because their founders made some bad decisions along the way.
The recent failure of Popslate is a perfectly good example of how a great idea, amazing financial backing, and support from communities, as well as a great team, was still not enough. There are some more essential skills to have if you want to be a successful startup founder.
Many founders and future startup owners are pursuing online masters in engineering, not because they need to learn how to develop their products – they usually have teams of engineers to do that – but because they need one critical skill: problem-solving. Engineers are natural problem solvers. The skills these founders acquire through the engineering online program will help them deal with challenges and issues effectively.
Online programs are considered the way to go because they allow you to pursue a master’s degree in a field of your choice while working on your product or running a startup. There are plenty of accredited programs to go for, especially now that top universities such as the University of California Riverside are opening their courses to more students.
Customer Experience Development
User experience is the most important aspect of your product, regardless of whether you’re developing a tangible product or a digital solution. The market is already very competitive as it is, so unless you offer a stellar user experience, it will be difficult to survive and attract more customers.
Unfortunately, not everyone can develop the right user experience to present through their products. There is one critical skill needed to be able to accomplish this, and that is the ability to think like the customer. After all, you are a customer.
This is an ability that can be mastered through training and experience. In order to fully understand what it is like to be a customer – and measure the user experience presented by your own product – you need to be able to think objectively, distance yourself from the company, and perform the necessary analysis to understand the bigger picture.
Research and Analysis
The last key skill to have as a startup owner is data analysis. There is no shortage of information to use when you’re running a business and trying to take a product to success. However, a special skill is needed to separate the important insights from noise – and to truly understand what the insights mean.
Data analysis is also a skill that can be mastered through formal education or experience. There are even short courses that help startup founders and future CEOs improve their ability to gather, process, and analyze information effectively. This, along with the previous skills we have covered in this article, will shape you into a better startup founder in no time.