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In today’s market, the startup has become a blanket term used for up-and-coming companies of various sizes. Originally, a startup was used to define a business with a small number of employees (often one or two), and very little financial backing at its outset. As a businessman and business keynote speaker for over 30 years, I have worked with hundreds of companies and learned what does and doesn’t work for new and growing ventures. The following principles are essential for scaling up a startup to take it to the next level.


The startup is inherently risky. It involves an investment of personal assets and a healthy amount of good faith that a business model will work. When and if a startup stalls, a savvy business owner must be willing to adapt. Reassessing various aspects of your startup, from marketing to the allocation of time and resources, is the best way to transform it and help it grow into the business you’ve always envisioned. Keep in mind that as your company continues to grow, your systems, training programs, and departments also need to keep up with the growth to build a foundation for long-term success. Always be willing to reevaluate and adapt, stay on top of current market fluctuations and research, and be ready to seize ideas and opportunities when they come.


My years as a business keynote speaker have taught me that speaking is only half of my job. The other half is listening. Listening to the questions and individual concerns of my audience members has helped me to hone in my messages and become a better business keynote speaker overall. This same principle works for growing a business. Knowing what both your customers and your employees value most about the business is essential in providing the best service and improving operational efficiency. Taking input, staying on top of innovations from competitors, and putting yourself in the shoes of a potential demographic are all effective ways of listening to grow your startup.


In this interconnected age, there are more ways than ever to reach out to people and organizations from around the world. For burgeoning businesses, this is good news. However, using the internet to pitch your startup effectively is only part of the process. While social media, online marketing, and a well-presented website are all necessities, many business owners forget about the real-world networking opportunities available. As a business keynote speaker, I am continually amazed by how much face-to-face communication can foster new relationships and grow existing ones. To help take your startup to the next level, you have to be aware of networking opportunities, both online and offline.