Alexandre Vandermeersch

Brussels, Belgium

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Alexandre Vandermeersch
Posted over 3 years ago
What advice can we offer to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Hello,I just wrote a blog post about it on http://alexvdm.com Here is the summary: 1.Focus. Launching multiple products is possible as a start up, but tough. The costs of developments have gone down over the last years, but the management time is still finite. 2.Take a ‘service’ mindset from the start. You’re not there to ship stuff, but to delight your clients. How can you help them perform better? If that means you have to move out of your ‘strategy’ for a while, that’s not an issue 3.Be broad & serious on financing: financing is critical, and it took us A LOT of time. But it’s not only about funds or business angels. Subsidies are really important too and their costs can sometimes be: zero. 4. It takes more time & frustrations, be ware. Customers will cancel projects before they start. People will not return your calls (never, or almost never). They will take months, even years to decide. Approach a broad set of prospects and focus on those for which you get traction, but never completely abandon the others (if they have potential). One day, they will come. 5. Move fast. It’s critical to move with a sense of urgency on everything, because your time is counted. 6. Strike a balance between sheer optimism and wishful thinking. Entrepreneurs are optimist by nature, and they should be in order to convince prospects, employees, shareholders, and all other stakeholders about their vision & products. But sometimes that optimism becomes a biased view that, because you wish it, it’s going to happen… It may fool people for some time, but the biggest fool is the entrepreneur himself. 7. Get organized. Entrepreneurship is about multi-tasking to the extreme. Managing a various of stakeholders, plus a product, pipeline & the rest is daunting, even with great partners & staff. For instance, we used a professional CRM tool (Salesforce) from the first month. If you wait, it means you’ll have to think how to ‘transition’ later, and will postpone the project.