Why Start-Ups Succeed or Fail

Recent studies have shown that the five factors leading to the success of new start-up businesses are:

  1. Timing accounted for 42% of the differences between success and failure. Is it the right time to do what you are considering?  This factor is more important than all the others in determining your success. Is it too early, too late or just the right time for this business to succeed?  Is the time right for you to begin this journey?  Owning a business is not a sprint, it is a marathon with no finish line; but a satisfying one.
  2. The second-most-important factor is having the right team and the ability to execute your plan.
  3. Surprisingly, the business idea was third in the hierarchy. It had been thought the idea was the most important factor.
  4. Next most important was a business plan. Does the start-up have a clear path to generating revenue?
  5. Fifth and last was funding.

There are, of course, many other factors contributing to the success or failure of any start-up but focusing on these five will get you headed in the right direction.  SCORE Citrus/Levy County can help you with every aspect of starting a business, free of charge, so give us a call at 352-249-1236.

Here are some additional tips from successful entrepreneurs for you to consider, whether you are starting a business or buying an existing business for the first time:

The most important one – Do what you say you will do.  Not only in your business life either.  The rest are in no particular order.

Plan your work and work your plan

Have a passion for what you are doing

Determine how much you are willing to sacrifice

Hold others accountable and be accountable yourself

Working smart is better than working hard

Prepare for constant change

Develop a disaster recovery plan – its hurricane season!

Hone your leadership skills


Your employees are your most valuable asset

Hire smart rather than manage tough

Your employees are internal customers – listen to them

Pay attention to your numbers

Profit matters more than revenue

Price your product/service for profit

Listen carefully to your customers

Learn how to acquire customers and to keep them

Outperform your competitors

Join industry groups and the Chamber of Commerce

Become an expert in your field

Marketing matters – have a plan

Use a complaint as an opportunity to improve

Keep standards high and pay attention to details

Don’t give up – success has more to do with persistence than perfection

Have a good attorney and accountant – and listen to them

Be a small business that plays big

Evaluate what’s working and pivot as needed

Celebrate your successes – both big and small

Don’t go it alone – get a SCORE mentor

And last but not least – pay your taxes on time