Practical Guideline for Startups in their Growth Stage
This practical guideline was created with the help of three successfully scaled up startups and four experts in the fields of sales, internationalization, talent acquisition, and empowerment. Therefore, this guideline aims to help startups with practical examples to overcome challenges in the growth stage. After having read the entire endeavor, a startup is able to scale up in the mentioned for aspects.
Vanessa Nussberger, 2018
Bachelor Thesis, Business Parc Reinach
Betreuende Dozierende: Mona Meyer
Keywords: Startup, Sales, Internationalization, Talent Acquisition, Empowerment, Knowledge Management, Guideline, Scaleup, Growth, Case Study, keylight, fadeout, VIU
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Startups nowadays receive a lot of help from society in the beginning. However, as soon as they have developed their product, they are left alone and need to grow by themselves. There is a current gap in literature when it comes to recommendation for startups how to scale up. This gap was tackled by this endeavor with the aim to create a practical guideline for startups in the growth stage. The basis for this endeavor was laid by a previous bachelor thesis, which identified several challenges startups face in the growth stage. The four most important dimensions identified were sales, internationalization, talent acquisition, and empowerment.
After having explored the current state of knowledge through reviewed journals, videos, books and blogs, the author developed questions to have in-depth discussions with one expert for each dimension (sales, internationalization, talent acquisition, and empowerment) and to analyze three case studies. The three startups that managed successfully to grow are VIU Ventures AG, fadeout GmbH and keylight GmbH. They revealed their secrets of success and as a result, the author achieved the objectives set in the beginning.
The results showed that getting real customers as early as possible in order to create evidence of performance is most important. Additionally, customer retention should receive more attention than customer acquisition as this leads to a decrease in costs. Therefore, customer satisfaction plays a major role and can be measured in various ways as outlined within the whole thesis. The evolved selling approach provides startups with a structure how startups can lead a customer meeting. A market attractiveness evaluation should be done before a startup enters a new market. This evaluation depends on the primary value creator of the respective startup. Additionally, startups should have a look on the various distances according to the CAGE model from Hofstede. Entry modes always bring a pay-off between risk and control with them. Therefore, a startup needs to be clear on what is more crucial for it. Employee referrals revealed as a very useful channel to source talented workforce. Furthermore, this thesis revealed that also other channels like online platforms, social media, and campus recruitment can lead a startup to success. However, it is essential to figure out in the beginning, where the target employee group stays. During the application process, it is key to consider cultural fit in order to reduce employee turnover. Empowered employees show a high degree of motivation and are willing to bring in their own ideas. Empowering is achieved by delegating authorities, rather than boring tasks, and by giving employees a lot of freedom. Keeping knowledge within a startup is key in order to transform knowledge into a startup’s asset. Hence, all employee should work on a shared system. Remaining small while growing is key, when it comes to communication. Therefore, regular gatherings, calls and discussion should be organized.
Studiengang: Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Fachbereich der Arbeit: HR & Organisation