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What all successful startups get right: speed

by Nicolas Jacobeus, on 23 May 2018

Where did they go wrong? What did they do right? Analysts have scrutinized hundreds of startups to identify the factors that lead to certain doom and those that will propel a startup to success.

There is one common element across all the analyses of failed and successful startups that must be present for the founding team to succeed: speed. Achieving and managing speed - knowing when to brake and when to fly at full throttle - is a critical skill of successful startup founders.

After working with dozens of startups and hundreds of software products ourselves, we see the key areas of talent, focus, and market validation as particularly important in driving speed.


For a startup, it’s all about execution, and you will need certain skills to support those activities at certain points. Hiring the wrong people - or hiring the right people at the wrong stage - will cost you precious time and resources. How can you be sure to hire the right skills when you don't know for sure what will need to be done in the fluid early stages?

Are you adding the right skill sets for where you stand in the startup journey? Find out in our discussion on the timing of talent at your startup in part one of this series.


The ability to regulate speed and direct efforts toward the right activities at the right time is a crucial leadership skill found at successful startups. Controlling focus helps a team shift its efforts rapidly. But what if you focus on the wrong thing? How can you know what to focus on?

Do you know when to open the throttle and tear forward and when to hold back? In part two, we discuss how focus keeps your business alive and speeds you toward product/market fit.

Market Validation

Waiting to talk to customers is linked to many reasons startups fail. Validating assumptions with potential users before building a software product or feature lets a startup move ahead quickly and confidently. How can you mitigate the risk of bringing to market a subpar solution and the negative impact it could have on your reputation, for example?

Is market validation built into your process? In part three, see how speed in market validation allows a startup to compress learning and avoid mistakes, speeding up its entire timeline.

How we build in speed

Belighted uses a methodology that helps startups achieve the economies of speed to find product/market fit fast:

Join us in the coming weeks as we explore the roles of talent, focus and market validation in achieving speed for startups:

Part 1: The timing of talent at your startup

Part 2: Focusing on the right things at the right time

Part 3: Speed in market validation

Topics:      Entrepreneurship     |     Développement MVP     |     The Belighted Way

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