Success can seem like a mythical creature when you're an entrepreneur. You hear all kinds of terrifying statistics, such as around 75 percent of venture-backed companies don't return cash to investors and 90 percent of startups fail. That makes it seem as if you can't possibly achieve success.

It's normal to feel frightened when you see numbers like that, but instead of focusing on the failures, look at the successes. The businesses that do succeed have something in common. They know the formula for success, and they put it to good use.

If you use the same formula, you can get the same successful results.

Be Smart with Money

All businesses go through cycles. There are cycles when the money comes in fast, and there are lean cycles, as well. Successful businesses are frugal during all of the cycles.

Of course, most startups have a problem with overspending. The former Silicon Valley darling Skully is the perfect illustration of what happens when a startup overspends. The firm made smart motorcycle helmets that improved rider safety. Investors were intrigued and poured money into the company, and customers lined up to buy the product.

The founders allegedly used money on sports cars, vacations, and more, and they ended up running out of money before customers received their helmets. Prevent this from happening to you by being smart with your money, even during the good times. That way, you will have money to fall back on during the lean times.

Get a Mentor

Ninety-three percent of small- and medium-sized businesses state that mentoring is a key to success, according to Sage. Unfortunately, just over a quarter of businesses surveyed stated they actually use mentors.

Business mentors make it easier to avoid some of the common mistakes that entrepreneurs face. In addition, mentors act as sounding boards and help entrepreneurs make wise decisions. They can even help with fundraising. If you don't currently have a mentor, it's time to get one. A mentor can make all of the difference between failing and succeeding. You can easily beat the odds with the help of a mentor.

Think FAST

You need to develop the FAST leadership method if you're going to be successful. FAST stands for Focus, Accountability, Simplicity, and Transparency. If you use this principle, you will identify and reach goals in a timely fashion. Your employees will understand what is expected of them, and they will stay on track.

Be a Problem Solver

The formula for success also includes picking the right products or services. Anyone can provide a product or service, but few provide products and services that people truly need. The key is to identify a problem in the market and then come up with a way to solve it. If you can do that, you will have a purpose in the market.

Every great product begins with a problem. Text messaging fixed the communication problem. IPods solved problems related to listening to lots of music on the go. If you can come up with a solution to a problem that needs to be solved, you will be in the position to have a successful career.

The Odds Are in Your Favor

Everyone tells you that the odds are against you when you start a new business, but that isn't really true. The odds are only against you if you fail to use the formula for success. Failing to use the formula is like refusing to use a blueprint to build a house. Of course, you'll fail if you don't have a blueprint in front of you. If you use the formula, you will know what to do along the way, and that will improve your chances for success.

Published on: Jan 2, 2018