Denver Startup Week – Success Starts with the Right Team

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With over 230 events scheduled around the Denver business community this week, it is no doubt that Denver Startup Week has become a force for connection and innovation among entrepreneurs, investors, developers, marketers and sales teams across the country.

Last year’s five-day event drew over 7,800 startup community members and 700 companies to more than 180 events.  This week’s event promises to be bigger and better and is, in fact, the largest such event in the nation.
Attendees have the chance to glean inspiration and best practices from peers and tech veterans.  And at the very least, startup teams can learn why and how not to make the same mistakes detailed in Fortune’s 2014 article Top 20 Reasons Why Startups Fail.

Of the 20 reasons listed in this article, we believe one reason is particularly noteworthy.  The number three reason for startup failure:

“Not The Right Team”

We all know the importance of surrounding ourselves with the right mix of people.  But with only a 10 percent success rate, it is clearly most critical for businesses in the startup phase.

But, that can be tricky.  There are many things to consider in the startup life cycle. How exactly do you pull together the right team? What type of professionals do you need?  What are the legal steps required to form a business? Naming? Branding? How about public relations? A large PR firm usually requires a $30,000 minimum retainer for six months.  Oh, and then there’s the funding.  Yes, “Ran Out of Cash” happens to be number two on this same Fortune list of reasons why startups fail.

At Canopy Advisory Group, we agree that assembling a shrewd, high-caliber, specialized team for a startup is important. However, we don’t believe that it has to be conventional.  In fact, our experience supports a model that is more flexible, and cost efficient.

Canopy connects startups with professionals that have expertise in every stage of the startup lifecycle.  Businesses can tap into a portfolio of top-notch, vetted consultants with big firm experience in law, finance, PR and marketing.  Canopy Advisors are seasoned professionals that understand the startup world and can jump in to fill a mission critical role.  As CEO Brett Goldberg of the Denver startup Spex said, “Sure, there are tons of enthusiastic people with a lot of energy out there wanting to join our team. Enthusiasm and energy is great. But I need an expert. Immediately.”  By partnering with Canopy, Spex was able to launch a targeted PR plan centered around positioning Spex as the industry’s leading property inspection technology and spreading awareness of the Spex platform.

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