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Myth busting: What they don't tell you about start-ups

It's synonymous with Silicon Valley and general glitz and glamour, so it stands to reason that there's something of a prestigious reputation associated with the typical start-up.

Unfortunately, this is something of a distortion. After all, while there are umpteen rags-to-riches stories of start-ups, there are also plenty involving hairdressers and other day-to-day trades that showcase the reality in a different light. Ultimately, while the rewards certainly do exist - getting there can be quite the journey.

Bearing this in mind, today's article will unravel some of the key myths associated with start-ups - and debunk them for good.

Myth #1 - Start-ups are only for techies

In the public consciousness, start-ups are inextricably linked with the tech industry.

This is understandable given the number of tech-based start-ups that have achieved massive success in recent years, but it's important to remember that there are plenty of non-tech start-ups too.

Take, for example, the likes of Airbnb and Deliveroo - both of which have disrupted their respective industries in a big way. Granted, there are big debates on whether these two firms should be classed as technology startups – but their main industries are hospitality and food delivery.

The lesson? Don't feel like your business idea isn't good enough because it isn't tech-based.

Myth #2 - You need a great idea to start a successful start-up

This is closely related to the first myth in that it reinforces the notion that start-ups are only for those with innovative, original ideas.

The truth is that many successful start-ups are based on simple ideas that have been executed well. Take, for example, the likes of Dollar Shave Club and Birchbox, which are based on the subscription model and have achieved massive success.

The lesson? You don't need a world-changing idea to start a successful business - you just need a good idea that you can execute well.

Myth #3 - You need to raise a lot of money to start a successful start-up

Again, this is closely related to the first two myths. The general perception is that start-ups need to raise huge amounts of money (usually from venture capitalists) to get off the ground.

While it's true that some start-ups do raise a lot of money, it's also true that many successful start-ups have been bootstrapped - that is, they've been started with very little money.

The lesson? You don't need to raise a lot of money to start a successful business - you just need enough to get started.

Myth #4 - You need to be young to start a successful start-up

This is perhaps the most pernicious of all the myths on this list, as it perpetuates the idea that only young people can be successful entrepreneurs.

The truth is that there are plenty of successful entrepreneurs over the age of 40 (and even 50).

The lesson? Age is no barrier to starting a successful business - it's all about having a good idea and executing it well.


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