3 questions to smart minds

How can young Internet companies grow optimally?

For this 3 questions to S. Peters

Photo: S. Peters | enable2grow
8. Novem­ber 2012

Young compa­nies always run the risk of making nume­rous mista­kes and thus losing both time and money. This affects all areas such as the orien­ta­tion of the products, stra­tegy, distri­bu­tion, plan­ning, etc. How to avert such expe­ri­en­ces are

For this 3 ques­ti­ons to Foun­der and Mana­ging Direc­tor (CEO) of enable2grow (GmbH) in Berlin/Munich

1. What mista­kes do you expe­ri­ence most often with young companies?

There are a number of mista­kes we see young compa­nies make time and time again:

  • There is a lack of clear stra­tegy and vision: the “big picture” is often lost in all the opera­tio­nal hustle and bustle.
  • There is too little trans­pa­rency in the company: important key figu­res are not syste­ma­ti­cally deter­mi­ned and analy­zed, which often leads to wrong decisions
  • The team does not work focu­sed enough towards rele­vant and measura­ble results: usually the goals and mile­sto­nes are not concrete enough, often there is also insuf­fi­ci­ent prio­ri­tiza­tion, so that it is easy to get bogged down

We have analy­zed these sources of error and direc­ted the focus of our manage­ment consul­ting: On digi­tal growth. Our team consists of 25 expe­ri­en­ced consul­tants, many of whom were with top stra­tegy consul­tancies (McKin­sey, BCG) and have worked opera­tio­nally in digi­tal busi­ness or have foun­ded compa­nies them­sel­ves. So we know the chal­lenges of young entre­pre­neurs in this dyna­mic envi­ron­ment from our own expe­ri­ence and can support them with our exper­tise and excel­lent network. It is important to always keep the stra­tegy in mind and use it as the basis for all decis­i­ons. In addi­tion, that the decis­i­ons made are also imple­men­ted quickly and effi­ci­ently, so that you get measura­ble results that you can always opti­mize further.

2. At what point does consul­ting make sense for young (digi­tal) companies?

Typi­cally, after the first round of finan­cing, it makes sense to bring consul­tants on board to address speci­fic issues in a focu­sed way. Here, it is prima­rily the “peri­phe­ral proces­ses” such as human resources/talent acqui­si­tion, selec­tion of tools, brand deve­lo­p­ment, sales and online marke­ting where we can provide targe­ted support for each area with our specia­lists. This allows the team to focus more stron­gly on core proces­ses (product manage­ment, tech­no­logy, BizDev) and use its resour­ces efficiently.

3. What 3 “Golden Rules” would you want to give a founder?
  • In the begin­ning: keep ques­tio­ning yours­elf and your idea, get a lot of feed­back, e.g. from friends, poten­tial custo­mers, busi­ness part­ners, inves­tors, etc.
  • When the busi­ness idea is ready: focu­sed and prag­ma­tic imple­men­ta­tion, so that a presen­ta­ble proto­type is crea­ted very quickly (without frills)
  • During the build: run many small tests, measure and opti­mize results — this applies to features as well as website design/usability and also all marke­ting activities.

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