There has been a lot of buzz around the Valley lately about the term “scrappy” and how startups are staying lean / scrappy to optimize growth and profitability.
Here are four simple ideas a founder/team should consider to increase scrappiness:
Philosophy — Everything starts with the way you view the world. Reading and understanding various philosophical systems from Stoicism to Zen Buddhism to Dale Carnegie are all important for a founder to understand how he/she views the world. Once you can adopt and commit to a scrappy philosophy then you can focus on scrappy execution. A founder must live scrappy and really “be” scrappy.
People – A founder must hire scrappy people. Look for folks who have started clubs on campus; have led church groups or worked at a non-profit. Any life experiences where they have had to deal with incredibly constrained resources and have had to hustle. You also have to look for folks who are excited with the possibility of finding creative solutions to problems by leveraging minimal resources. Also finding people with large personal and professional networks is always a plus since they can tap their network for solutions to problems.
Reward and acknowledge people who stay scrappy.
Products — With the recent surge of amazing web based solutions for common business processes, being scrappy has never been easier. I have listed a few such solutions below:
· www.pipelinedeals.com – CRM system
· www.lessaccounting.com – Accounting
· www.ReTargeter.com – branding and driving sales
· www.FlowTown.com – email marketing / social media demographics
· www.KISSMetrics.com – metrics
· www.Recurly.com – managing online payments
· www.Yammer.com – rapid cross platform internal communication
· www.google.com/apps — web based email and calendars
Place – Given the current economic conditions there are ample opportunities to find cheap office space. There are also a host of larger companies or other startups that have additional space and are willing to sublease that space to you. Also location is key, if you are surrounded by other startups, great resources and free events that may be more beneficial in the long term than going with a cheaper space.
Being scrappy is a life-long philosophy but when/if you do have the resources then make sure to give back to other scrappy folks!
-Arjun Dev Arora, ReTargeter
Note from admin: **Want more of Arjun? Come to the launch of Scrappy Startup Forum on April 30th! http://scrappyceo.eventbrite.com **