It is true that we have learned a lot of useful things in college. However, it also true that there are several startup lessons that we have never had the chance to learn.
- Dealing with failure: In startup experience, we cannot avoid knowing the meaning of failure. In fact, the most successful businessmen have experienced failure in their lives. No success can be achieved if no failure had been witnessed to teach us something. In college, we do not learn how to deal when failing a course, or failing to get a job after graduation. We are not taught that failure is not the end of the world and that we should know how to deal with it when we decide to enter the world of startup.
- Raising money: This paperwork for this process is much more difficult than the process itself. Banks will request detailed plans and definitions for the products and its benefits. In college, we do not learn the skills of discussing with banks and investors in case your paperwork does not explain your point of view.
- Budget: In college, we do not learn the importance of the balance sheet, and how important it is to have a budget enough for 6 months in advance, or even more.
- Thinking outside the box: We’ve been taught that there is always an answer, whether right or wrong. However, we never learned that startup experience is full of doubts. You should be ready to be wrong in order to be considered as someone with originality.
- Building the right network: In colleges, nothing had improved our skills in knowing how to find the right people to deal with in startup. The people around us are not always the right ones. We never learned to build the right network of people in order to get more chances of success.
- Being a salesperson: In classes, we hardly have been taught to be successful salespersons. These skills teach us how to read people and know what they want so we can know what to offer. In fact, for a startup to succeed, we should be able to do the marketing of the product for the clients, employees and investors.
- Becoming a boss: We learn how to lead. However, we’re never taught how to become bosses. Being a boss is to lead, motivate and take risks. We do not learn these skills.
- Time management: In colleges, we have breaks, free hours and some time to relax. We were never prepared for the hard work required in startup; we will need to work around the clock, while friends are having fun and others have having a good-night sleep.