Startup growth momentum
When you have momentum, hard things feel easy. When you don't have it, easy things feel hard.
Hey everyone👋, welcome to the 24th newsletter.
Momentum hit hard on me recently, I've been struggling with any sought of work I do. It’s more like I'm trying to push hard but it's going nowhere. Take my newsletter, I haven't been able to publish anything in the last few weeks (apologies for that 🙏🏻).
I have created several drafts but I'm not able to finish & publish them. One of the reasons is that nothing makes me feel like the article fits best for you’ll, which is building procrastination. I'm not trying to make it perfect but to a point where I go back and read it myself and say it was worth it.
Maybe it's because of the burn-out or the lack of content ideas or inspiration. But some of my writing took too much time & still showed the best results. Then there are those that took a lot lesser time to finish but still performed the best. So timing isn’t the problem, I guess 🤷🏻♀️.
This tweet got me thinking that it's just a matter of fact that I've to push myself to be in the momentum and get started with it. This can happen in both life and startup.
“Momentum is everything in a startup. If you have momentum, you can survive most other problems. If you do not have momentum, nothing except getting momentum will solve your problems. Founders internalize this during YC; many seem to forget in the few years after YC. Burnout seems to almost always affect founders whose startups are not doing well, and then becomes a downward spiral. In fact, one of my top few startup commandments is “never let the company lose momentum.” - Sam Altman
That's exactly what I experienced. Completely out of momentum because things weren’t going in the right direction.
If I achieve the goal without losing motivation, within the flow, everything goes in the momentum but if not, I'll be stuck. Though over time, everything builds up and it’ll be aligned in the right direction but due to breaks in between, the growth is generally slow.
Especially it's not just me or my newsletter, it can also happen to a startup. Winning small goals in your startup helps build a growth momentum.
Motivation and consistency
Momentum has two characteristics: Motivation (even a small win will encourage you to carry on) and consistency (constantly achieving the bigger goals will help you move forward). Not every time you’ll have the best deal or get expected results. But the focus on moving forward with excitement is what will help you do things.
After a while, momentum becomes its own energy, enabling a bigger product market, and with each goal, it gets bigger and bigger like a snowball, which at times gets hard to stop.
Every momentum starts with a goal and ends with a result, in-between are the ingredients of growth, plan, and execution. The faster you do this, the faster that wheel spins and the less likely it is to slow down.
Let's say I'm adding a new feature, after adding it, I will see the reaction of my users and get some feedback, next I will immediately remove the bugs and move on the next milestone. Letting the tweak flow.
If I don't keep up with the momentum, I'll easily lose my users.
Losing the momentum after all.
No matter what you do, in life or startup, there will a point where you'll lose the momentum. You can control the velocity of execution by pushing it quickly but things can happen and we lose focus.
Building momentum in an early-stage company should be quick and is the hardest. You would quickly need to build a founding team, talk to customers, push the team with motivation, get investors, add features, and what not else.
It will be hardest as you won't see much result quickly and have to quickly move forward which can cause burn-outs & give-ups. True, you'll build a motion but with slow progress but the momentum will compound after all.
Momentum is moving forward
Early-stage startups have small teams, few customers, small goals and are only intended to move forward faster. The action is to move in the right direction.
How you'll know you're moving in the right direction? By setting goals and measuring them. Start with a big milestone divided into several small goals. This way your focus will be clear and you'll be motivated with each achievement, which will build momentum over time.
If you achieved your goal, move on to the next. The time between the end of one and the start of another should be less because that's where most of the burnout happens. If you've got a success, catch the momentum to move forward immediately.
Two things will happen if you don't do so: it will take time to reach the next goal and all the work you've built up till now might go to reset.
See if you’re building a community, you did everything in the early stage to acquire members, make them participate in the conversation, build up engagement, and whatnot. You put in all your hard work, time, and energy. The community is filled with hype. But if you don’t bring up new events to participate in, there’s less possibility of new members joining in and it can also lose the flow.
How to get into the momentum?
Re-evaluate the problem you’re solving.
Talk to customers.
Organize the way you work.
Don’t wait for things to happen, create it yourself.
Before you see me next time, I have two things to say:
You can now schedule a 1:1 with me if you have an idea or building a product or just want to chat, here.
Also, if you have any questions or want me to give my insights about building a startup or product advising or just want to give me feedback (which I highly appreciate), hop on here.
Until next time! 👋
👋 PS: I’m Ritika founder, product marketer and advisor for early-stage startups, find more here or connect with her here. If you’re a first-time founder looking for curated resources, download here. If you enjoyed this post, read the past issues here. You can also promote your product in this newsletter.
A big thanks for reading & sharing!