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The overall theme here is managing what you can control. There may be more things out of your control in the next few weeks (or months) than you’ve ever experienced or dreamed of in your life until now. Taking that in your stride is a part of everyday life as an entrepreneur and startup.

Here are the top tips for acing what’s next.

1) Be Sure You Have A Must-Have Product
In times like these when consumer and business spending can be tighter, you have to have a must-have product. You also must make sure your consumers have the ability to pay for it.
Don’t slack on quality. Word gets around fast.

2) Be Scrappy, Stay Lean
While this may be a very important time to lean on seasoned advisors and to leverage the experience of those who have been through other crises, it may not be the best time to spend big on bringing in an outside CEO, or other high-cost executives.
In fact, while you need the best team and may need more specialized talent, you may need to slow hiring, and even trim the fat by making substantial layoffs. Prune as much as you can. It is better to do it once, than for your team to suffer the demoralizing and scary effects of repeat layoffs.
Instead, turn to consultants and on-demand remote help as needed. If these trends continue, you’ll find more great labor available at even better rates in a few months from now.
This is time to be a scrappy startup, operate lean, and retain that bootstrapping founder mentality. Every dollar you spend needs to achieve a great return. You need a nimble and fluid organization.

3) Get Profitable & Cash Flow Positive
It may not have been very trendy lately, but getting profitable and staying cash flow positive is becoming far more important. It’s going to be far more attractive and fashionable to be profitable in the next couple of years.
This is true for raising money, getting acquired or going public. It also means you’ll be perfectly fine if none of those are easy options. You can hold out until the financial winter thaws out again.

4) Fundraise and Take The Money NOW
In spite of the chaos, investors seem to continue to be surprisingly bullish. At least for now. They may not be as liquid and confident in 6 or 10 months from now. The terms you’ll be offered could easily get much uglier. Take the money now if you can get it. Move up your raise. Increase your raise and take in far more runway than you think you’ll need. It is better than running out.
With this in mind, companies that are looking for a Seed round or a Series A financing should continue to march forward seeking investors. It is in times of corrections where some of the best companies are created. In 2008 alone companies like Airbnb or Dropbox were created.

5) Just Keep Marketing, Just Keep Marketing
One of the biggest mistakes companies make in times like these is to cut back on marketing. It will be the end of you. At best, a slow death. Do demand a better ROI on your marketing. Though, this may be the opportune moment to expand and pick up the slack from your competitors and seize their market share.

6) Use 100% Remote Teams. Period.
There are very, very few scenarios in which startups need in-house teams and to be in an office with all of that risk and overhead today. Others are already building billion-dollar companies with 100% remote teams. They now have a huge advantage. Now it is an absolute must to break free from that old way of doing things and operate in the cloud.
If you can sell your real estate assets now, you will probably be much better off in many ways. Get rid of debt and overhead, gain a capital injection, and avoid declining values. You can always buy them back cheaper later if you really want to.

7) Be Ready For The Opportunities
Huge and exciting opportunities are emerging right now. Be alert to them. Have the cash to take advantage of them. Cash will be king in the months ahead.

8) Lead By Example
You can’t be a president, and say one thing and do another, and expect others to listen, no matter the excuse or justification. This is the same for the founders and business owners.

Stay calm and optimistic. Choose temporary social isolation for the benefit of others, if not yourself. Keep up healthy habits.
Challenges are coming. Just like every other day of being an entrepreneur. Look for the way to pivot, innovate and use it to make your product and business better. It will pay off in the long run.

If you want to learn more about how to build a compelling Investor Pitch Deck that gets you funding, then join our FREE masterclass on November 3rd at 14:00 CET

In this masterclass, we will be sharing with you the tips & tricks that we used to raise over €5,5 million in pre-seed and seed investment for our own startups and also what has worked for 100’s of startups we have helped to create successful Investor Pitch Decks that got funding.

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