7 Things You Must Do Before Quitting Your Job (For Starting A Startup)

I was over excited with my first startup. I resigned from my job in Dec 2013 for my first startup SchoolGennie. I did a lot of mistakes and my startup failed in a couple of months.
I learned some valuable lessons that are extremely helpful for anyone building his first startup.
If I had to go back in time, I would do following things right.

#1 Talk directly to Customers

Don’t assume anything. Talk to your customers what they want unless you are innovating something like Apple iPhone. Most of the times people hide what they are building. The worst part is that they hide their product from their customers until it is complete.
Shame on me, I did this mistake. I waited for six months to talk to my first potential customer because my product was under development and I did not want to embarrass myself with the incomplete and ugly version of my software.
The truth is that I was afraid of losing a customer. Anyways I never won that customer. Rather had I spoken to him before building my software, I could have built a better product. A product with less features but more useful for customers like him.

#2 Validate your market

It happens sometimes that you talk to few customers and start building a product based on their requirements. You must check whether the same things is required by everyone in the market or your product is useful for very few people.
We built school ERP on the assumption that school management softwares are required by each and every school. But we were wrong. Most of the schools are operating well on excel sheets or with freely available management softwares. Different schools need different features and customization for each school is not possible for a cloud-based software (like our)

#3 Build relationships with startup community

I received so much love from fellow entrepreneurs when I started interacting with them. If you are planning to start a company, it will be good to participate in startup events. There are so many awesome people (but beware of junk entrepreneurs) who are willing to help you out in building your business. You have to go outside and find who can help you.
You can attend events like Startup Weekend, Startup Saturday, in50Hours in your nearby city. You should also read startup media like YourStory, Inc42, NextBigWhat and iamwire.

#4 Follow Blogs in your niche

I was so stupid that I started reading blogs after leaving my job. There is so much free information available on the internet and you must learn as much as possible while doing your full-time job. If you are going to do sales and marketing for your startup then read marketing and sales blogs. If you are building a mobile app then you must check out blogs for learning mobile app development.

#5 Read books

I have not met any successful entrepreneur who hates reading books, everyone reads books in the startup community. I started reading books very late, my first book being The Art of Startup by Guy Kawasaki. It changed the way I was looking at my startup. In fact this book helped me in saving me a lot of money that I was wasting on unnecessary things in my startup.
After that I read more books like Good to Great, The lean startup and my real startup journey started.

Here is the list of my favorite books.

#6 Find a Mentor

Feel yourself extremely lucky if you can find a mentor before leaving your job. I found my mentor after failing at my startup and I can not quantify how much value mentors add into your startup and personal life.
You should not spam people asking for mentorship but take a conscious decision who can help you out in your startup. You can just send them a mail explaining your idea, the area where you need his help, why you chose him as mentor and what you have to offer in exchange of mentorship (money, equity or something else you think is valuable for your mentor)

#7 Network with influential people

Create a list of influential people in your industry. Reach out to each of them for help without spamming. If they are influencing you industry then they must be receiving tons of emails on daily basis. Make sure your email is outstanding, cripΒ & clear and must have a value for the receiver.
Most of the people love to help, you must prove that you are worthy of their love.

Pardeep Goyal
 

I am an entrepreneur, storyteller and founder of StartupKarma & CashOverflow

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 87 comments
aryan tripathi

Its great to see someone sharing the failure story with so much in detail. For me the article in less of a failure story and more of a teaching as to “How to start a startup”. Everyday some or other startups are shutting down, some big some small but nobody is sharing what happened wrong and how not to do it. Today also , doormint shutdown, hopefully the founders share their journey of failing in hyperlocal business model. I have been running a food tech startup for little more than 6 months and so far doing decent. Now I am looking to raise funds and create valuable connections, it would be great if I can get you templates which I can use to reach out to people.

Thanks for this knowledge sharing article.

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vidushi tyagi

sir, i have emailed you. waiting for your reply

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    Pardeep Goyal

    I have not received any email from you. Sent you an email now.

    Reply
Reka

I like your collection, thanks for sharing this wonderful collection of themes with us.i am working in Erp In India

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Anubhav chauhan

hi Pradeep,
nice in depth article would be very helpful for startups and for those who wanna start their startups …
can u post some article on franchise business …
i wanna start a platform for entrepreneurs from their they find good resource pool n knowledge ..like Your story ……

nice to hear from your
Regards
Anubhav

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Rakesh Chandra

Hi Pradeep

Your article was just an eye opener for me

i am actually planning to quit my job for a own startup and i feel im young to start and i dont have much savings but my gut feeling is that my idea is going to work, but can you put it in detail what all the ground work i have to do before leaving the job and you said we should have a mentor before we get into a startup but how do i know he/she is a perfect mentor.

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Deepak Purve

Dear Pradeep…really,an eye opener article, i imagined it like a film while reading …appreciate
Could you please share the templates
Thanks

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Munish Ahuja

Excellent Article. I am from Delhi, IT backgroung… working on 4 differnt projects (Education, Wedding, Alternative Medicine, Spirituality) and got some investors investing INR 1Cr in my one project.

Out of my interest I created one Spiritual & Religious website, invested huge amount from my pocket in last 5 years. Now to take it to next level looking for investors. Daily Traffic is around 1500 to 2000 per day. URL is https://spiritualworld.co.in. Recently we have launched its english version https://spiritualworld.co.in/en.
FB Group: World of Spiritual & Divine Thoughts | FB Page: spiritualworld.co.in

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Varsha

Hi Sir , Ur article seems an eye-opener for the budding startups . I will be stepping to the same boat shortly. I would need your help . please guide me and my fellows..Can u please mail me the template. TIA

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Mohit Agrawal

Hi Pardeep,

I am amazed by the gems of knowledge you have provided to your fellow entrepreneurs. I am currently working on my first startup and will launch it soon.
It would be of great help if you send me the templates at [email protected].

Keep guiding us always.

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Manisha

HI Pradeep,

Your story sounds like our story. Indeed useful tips for people who are working to start their ventures. Would be helpful if you can mail me the templates.

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Shiva

Dear Pradeep, Such an invaluable article you wrote.. It will be of great help for people like me! I too am in the same boat as you were, i.e., I quit my full-time job and joined hands with a like-minded friend (who also quit his job) and now we are both working on a start up πŸ™‚ Can you please send me the templates to [email protected]? Thanks in advance!

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Milind Adpaiker

Thanks Pradeep for sharing your experiences. I am planning to start up something of my own in near future and would be glad if you could send me the template to reach out to mentors.

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Shashank Rastogi

Thanks Pradeep for the excellen article.. I am just starting up on this and have not really done much of my preparations but i guess i would need your help around 6-8 months later. it would help if you can share the templates to my email

thanks
shashank

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Rahul

Hello Pardeep, Excellent blog. Please I need a template to reach out to mentors.

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Kumar

Hi pradeep,
Nice article,Thanks for sharing your experience
Pls share me the template

I have passion to start a business but need some good business or startup ideas…

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hey Kumar, I have some ideas but do not have time to implement all. I will share on my blog. Stay tuned.

    Reply
Senthilkumar

Hi Pardeep, thanks for this article. More importantly for sharing your start-up experiences and it really helps for the budding folks like me. Thank god I have looked at this one or otherwise I would have been jobless next week. I was planning to quit and move on with my startup but after seeing your article, I realized I have miles to go… thanks for this eye-opener

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    Pardeep Goyal

    I wish you read my article after leaving your job!! You missed whole point in my article. I am so happy that I quit my job however lost a lot of money. Without leaving job I would be doing same shitty work…

    Reply
Khushbu

Hi Mr. Pradeep, very nice information. I have also started a small firm. I would like to connect with you over mail. Please share your email id.

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Amar

Pradeep bro,really doing a great job.”Don’t read success stories you will, get only message… Read failure stories, You will get some ideas to get success!!
– +Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam” i need those templates bro ping me [email protected] …..Gonna send it back to you …..Dont know any mentor better than you ….Hope my template will impress .., :p

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Sagar Ganatra

It’s Really nice Experience of Startup Failed i have learn lots of thing from here.
Thanks
Sagar Ganatra

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Himujjal

Awesome article
It will be gratefully,
If you share templates to reach for mentor and influential people
To [email protected]

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Abhinendra Chauhan

hi Pradeep sir I have an idea in mind and it will be very helpful if you can guide or help me reaching to some mentors and please too send me the template my email id is [email protected],com
And it is an awesome that somebody is sharing there story on a platform where people like me will be helped by your article.
Thanks, for helping us.

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Navin

Hi Pradeep,
Appreciate your passion and you are helping lot of people.So far only success stories were available but reading about the failures helps in more learning.Greatful to you if you can send the
email templates .

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Sent you templates Navin. Let me know how it performed.

    Reply
Sukhdev

Hi,
First of all thanks Pradeep for the post!
Can you please share the templates

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Rekha

Hi Pardeep,
I like the honesty of your confessions.I am a simmering with an idea to set up a school setup,it would be great to connect with you .

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Balaji

First of all thanks Pradeep for the post related to startup. I started liking your post and also following you on linkedin.

I am planning to start my own company so the strategy which i am thinking is to start of with services to the customer as it will give the company some money to start working on product.

Can you please share the templates

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Mukesh Chauhan

Hello ,

Any article of yours makes me more eager to meet you in person over cup of tea. By the time I can not can I have some email template and any other stuff which you may feel would help me in getting idea coming to reality.

Regards

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anil upadhyay

Nice to read,very effective for new startup

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Sushanth Raikar

Hey Pardeep ,

Awesome Article !!
Please I need a template to reach out to mentors and influential people as well

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Shiva

Hi Pradeep,

Thank you for whatever you are doing to help the wannabe entrepreneurs like me to get right directions in their endeavors by sharing your knowledge and experience. I am a non tech guy but have a great zeal for an entrepreneurship. I would like to be connected with you for your guidance in my endeavors. Could we connect on Linkedin?

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hi Shiva,

    Sure we can connect over linkedIn. Feel free to drop me an email. Details are on about page.

    Reply
Ashish kumar

Thanks Pradeep for sharing your experience, till now I have read many successful story but now only realized that failure story is having more useful contents. I am also planning to start below educational startup,

http://www.indiarose.in (Add free portal for free and quality study material)

http://www.conceptfix.com ((Under construction)Online portal for test series and study materiel for competitive exam and campus placement)

I need your help for conceptfix, In last one year i have done some transaction (around 10K)also by selling ebooks but now making it proper online study portal . Could you please send me links where you have written anything related to educational startups . One thing I got it that if i want to approach college or school then I should better contact those people who are making financial decision , not to their principal.

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Hari

Enjoyed each and every word of it. Very informative Pardeep.
It would be great If you could share your email ID or mobile number. Thanks a ton. πŸ™‚

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Thanks Hari, my contact details are available on the about page.

    Reply
PK Khurana

Dear Pardeep Ji,

I am your fan already. Could you please mail me the email template or connect me to a co-founder who is able to tolerate the whims and fancies of an oldie like me ?

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hello Mr. Khurana,

    Thanks for following my articles and leaving your comment. I will let you know if I came across someone worth a co-founder for your startup (cafeJade).

    Let me know which email templates you need?

    Reply
Bharathi

Hi pradeep. It is well written. I want the template to reach out influencer.

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hi Bharathi, You will receive email templates shortly via email.

    Reply
Nicola

Dear Pardeep,

Great advice! Thanks a lot.
Could you kindly send me those templates to reach out to Mentors

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pankaj

Hi Pardeep,

Can you pls share the email to be sent to the mentor?

Regards

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hi Pankaj,

    I just sent email templates to your email address.

    Reply
Akash

Hey pradeep,
Needed the template of an email to send out to influential persons..could you please help me out..

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Loki Sagar

Hello sir, I liked the article very much. helpful for someone looking to startup.
Please I need a template to reach out to mentors and influential people as well

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Pratik Jadhav

Hi Pardeep, It is a Most Informative Article. How do I find Co-Founder who has equal urge like mi for My startup Plan ?

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Hi Pratik,

    I am glad you liked my article. I will connect you with my friend who can help you in finding co-founder.

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John

Please I need a template to reach out to mentors.

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abdul wajid

Hello, Pardeep I have become your fan, after reading your startup stories, you got very good experiences in a single starup, any how wish u good luck 4 the next starup,

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    Pardeep Goyal

    Thanks Abdul. I have done with two startups and working on third now πŸ™‚

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      Irfan

      Can’t believe your passion. You are a true entrepreneur from heart.

      Reply
        Pardeep Goyal

        Thanks Irfan

        Reply
          Irfan

          Pradeep, could you please send template to my email id [email protected] . I must say I found someone who is willing to help grow my business. I would surely connect with you after completing the development. You do can connect with me if any technical consulting is needed.

          Reply
          Pardeep Goyal

          Thanks Irfan for the offering, much appreciated. I sent you templates.

          Reply

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