6 Tips for Startup Success From MIT Bootcamp for Entrepreneurs

Former Olympian Inga Stasiulionyte shares the main lessons that she learned about starting a successful business

(Image: iStock.com/monkey business images)

Reports show that at least eight out of 10 businesses fail within a year after opening, and roughly 96% will close in 10 years. This summer, MIT held its regular Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, where entrepreneurs from around the world underwent the most challenging week of their lives while learning how to build a lasting and successful business. MIT organizes these bootcamps with the goal of creating more stable jobs. When businesses fail, it’s not only the owners that suffer financially and emotionally; when people lose their jobs, vendors lose their clients.

Inga Stasiulionyte is a former Olympian, mentor, and an MIT bootcamp award-winner for Onbotraining, her online startup for mind training. Here, Stasiulionyte shares the main lessons she’s learned from her MIT startup bootcamp experience.

1. Learn to Achieve Perfection


Everything is possible, even at the highest level. When running a 100-meter sprint, your body will function at its best in the shortest amount of time. However, you have to keep moving faster and faster without losing quality, in order to succeed. The more we learn about how we function, the more we can challenge our capabilities and standards. It all depends on mastering your thoughts, actions, discipline, and planning.

The more we learn about how we function, the more we can challenge our capabilities and standards. It all depends on mastering your thoughts, actions, discipline, and planning.

2. Work With Experts


If you want to achieve the best for yourself, work with experts. When you work with the best in their field, you can continuously challenge your limits and see how they break theirs. Being around groundbreaking individuals will increase your mental limits, surpassing what you thought was possible.

3. Push Yourself


Put yourself in situations that will push you to your limits, in order to learn new behaviors. You are as good as your weaknesses, but as you improve your weaknesses, you also improve your strengths. By learning new disciplines, we can innovate and improve our results.

4. You Are Not Alone


Get yourself a support group; you do not need to go through your struggles alone. Most successful people have hard times. In fact, they often have very dramatic, stressful times. I’ve coached several millionaires, whose problems were as large as life. Just as in the case of elite athletes, the most accomplished businessmen have coaches, mentors, and serious advisors that help them make better decisions and support them through hard times.

5. Don’t Get Stuck on an Idea


Many people focus too much on their idea of how everything should be; their life, their business, their product, on how people should behave, and so on. However, we should ask ourselves what our purpose is, instead of getting stuck on one, specific idea. A product or a service will change many times, until a working solution is found to fulfill the purpose.

6. Test Your Idea


Test it not with opinions; prove it with results. This idea of yours isn’t worth a penny, if you don’t know how to execute it. Test it with potential customers.

Just after the defining the business idea, all the teams at MIT bootcamp are forced to interact with their potential customers and interview them. It doesn’t matter how hard it is to reach the target market, all teams have to find a way to get real responses to validate their idea.