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  • Writer's pictureEnterprise Orchard

Start-up Business Support: The Key Ingredient You Could Be Missing 

  1. Focus on your customers' biggest problem

Developing a new product is an exciting time for start-up founders, especially if the

market and consumer research has revealed a real opportunity.

Fundamentally customers want fixes to their problems. But you need to ensure

you’re solving the right problem and there is a business behind it, e.g is the problem

you’re solving big enough?

You need to get inside the head of your prospective customers. What are their

aspirations, life goals, current pain points, how do they think?

When conducting customer research don’t make the mistake of mentioning your

solution and business. Instead, dig deep into their issues. Find out at least 100

problems your prospective customers are facing.

When you get down to analysing the issues, you’ll realise there will be 3-4

common themes, this is what you base your business on.

Doing this by yourself can be daunting. You may lack confidence, be unsure about

the process or simply don’t know where to start. You need to be clear on what your

customer actually wants.

Does someone really desire a ¾-inch drill bit? Or in fact, what they actually want is a

hole in the wall to hang a picture their child drew for them? When conducting

customer research and testing, a guiding hand can really help you uncover the right



2. Use Positive Peer Pressure

A little external pressure from those around us can sometimes help us focus better

and achieve our goals. Time management coach Elizabeth Grace Saunders explains

in a new Harvard Business Review piece how "positive peer pressure" can add a

healthy boost that helps us drive our tasks to completion.


Positive peer pressure can help you stay on track. Leveraging its power may entail

informing a team about a project's time frame or collaborating more closely with the rest of your team to help keep you on track.

Positive peer pressure can only work if you already have a trusting relationship with

your team or peers. But many people building a business are solo founders and don’t

have others to speak with.

That’s why The Engine Room peer accelerator exists, to provide different

perspectives, facilitate learning from one another and provide much-needed

accountability. On average our members hit their weekly goals 87% of the time.


  • Make a plan. There are numerous free project management tools available, such as Trello. In a collaborative, real-time environment, teammates and colleagues can create virtual "boards" and "cards" to track the progress of work projects. There is nowhere to run. This transparency contributes to the importance of accountability.

  • Prioritise as if there were no tomorrow. Many technology start-ups have mastered product development accountability, particularly through agile development. Our Scrum masters hold us to account. Our priority lists keep us on track. We meet on a weekly basis to review our progress. It's methodical, transparent, and collaborative.

  • Set specific objectives. Get specific about goal setting and communicate frequently. Clear, data-driven goals make it much easier to succeed. Create a challenging milestone with your team, write it in the sand, and check in weekly. Taking ownership and providing the authority, budget, and resources to achieve goals together gets far better results.

Join our peer accelerator – The Engine Room, where you'll accumulate expert

guidance and personalised strategies to form enduring habits and mindsets that

unlock early, sustainable business growth.

To find out more please visit



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