Some Thoughts for a Startup

Yesterday I have talked with a business owner who has run his business for 15 years.

The business is of medium size, not a corporation but a manufacture company with its production chains and a warehouse.

I asked the owner about the ideas of startups, how recent young entrepreneurs should do and know before they start a business. And combining with my own mere knowledge and experience, I have concluded the foundation of a startup.

This is definitely not the perfect module, but I managed to pick up some basics of the basics.

Team

Who’s going to get hired? What kind of experts and talented personnel you want in your team?

If start a company from zero, it’s almost certain it’ll cost you most of the time hiring people at start. Thus, people are crucial to a company’s success.

Take heed that a company’s owner needs to have good judgments on persons–you can start a company and make a bad product, but you can’t start a company and have a loose team.

This initial team is the base foundation of a company’s culture, if said company wants to run in a long run.

If it’s localization company, which is a company I’m considering to start. It consists of mostly translators as the main work force, and other departments for chores.

Since translators are a prerequisite, understanding what kind of translators is going to be brought in the company is important.

A translator must understand English speaking countries’ culture and have experience with video games. The basic understanding of “pop culture” is a must need. Plus, it’s better if the translator have knowledge about video game industry in NA. Since most publishers are coming from NA.

Meanwhile, it’s important to know that publishers come from Japan are also priority targets.

Hiring such personnel would be better, if we choose from international graduates come back to China. These people have experiences abroad, however the degree of understanding, some of them may not know a bit about video games, that’s a minus. That’s why we need to filter from these people.

Funds

Nothing leaves money before you do something, especially you’re doing a startup, it’s going to cost initial money. So the questions would spring from where are you going to acquire such funds, and what are you going to do with it?

And it’s important to know that how are you going to manage your company’s income while you’re in production. If a product takes 3 years to finish, what is a company’s income in these 3 years? Is it going to rely on the mere initial budget? Or you can manage to pull out some new income flow?

Make the company do some freelancing and build a side business model of your product are some ideas I come up with. The business model can be selling byproducts of your product, or doing some extra work for other companies. Also, crowdfunding is always a go, utilizing it would be a good decision for small startups.

Rules and Management System

Every organization has a hierarchy, although I personally very oppose the idea of hierarchy, it seems inevitable to set up one to “arrange” people.

However, a more autonomous system is what I look forward to. But that comes with a price and time.

First, the structure of a company. Any of normal size company would have such departments: IT, Marketing, PR, HR, R&D, QA and QC and Politics.

As a localization company, the main force would be focused in R&D. Even a video game studio is like this.

 


Before you start any type of business, it is important to know what you are doing.

To start a business, you need a product, or a service, which means, anything that can sell, anything that has value attached to it.

With the product on hand, now you need to consider composing a team. A team of producing, marketing and accounting.

Then, figure out your money problem.

Then, talk about rules and management of the company.

Later, the culture, and values of the company.

 

Also on mentoring. If you learn from a manufacturer, you are going to make a manufacture company. If you learn from a bar owner, you are going to make a bar. If you learn from a translator, you are going to make a translation agency. Picking mentors is crucial in your steps of becoming a self-sustainable entrepreneur.

Many times, you will just make something out of some others’ footprints.

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