What business lessons can we learn from some of the most successful startups of all time? originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
As a lifelong entrepreneur, I'm constantly looking to the companies and startups I respect to see what I can learn and apply in my own entrepreneurial journey. Why not learn from the successes and failures of others?
While there's something to be learned from every startup, here are a few of the most impactful startups and the lessons they can teach every entrepreneur or business leader.
Google's lesson: build products that scale and last. Google prides themselves on deep culture of engineering, where technology products are built not only to meet the needs of their users today, but their needs of tomorrow. They invested in the backend of their services, which may not even be visible to users, and its paying dividends. We live in a world with more change and disruption than ever before. Companies would do well to learn the value of this long-term thinking in every facet of their offering.
Facebook's lesson: ship fast and break things. Facebook is known for their hacking culture, where getting something done and live yesterday is the norm. This gives them the ability to get feedback early, test new ideas, and drive an innovative business. As we all know from their recent headlines, it's a philosophy that should not be applied in all areas, but there are lessons in agility and speed every organization can benefit from.
Amazon's lesson: think of everything as a service. Amazon is known for creating loosely coupled services and 'API-fication' of software and business. Most of their teams operate as services to other teams to build on top of them. This has enabled them to massively reuse their internal services and launch new businesses at scale very quickly. This services-oriented approach can be applied beneficially to many businesses.
Uber's lesson: if you're not mindful of culture, success isn't a safeguard. Uber is one of the most successful startups of all time. Yet they've taken a beating in the last few years, as headline after headline splashed across our screens about the issues with the company's culture. It's an important reminder for every startup that if you neglect culture, you're going to run into trouble at some point no matter how successful you are.
Atlassian's lesson: you don't have to be from the valley to be a global success. Founded in Australia, far from Silicon Valley, Atlassian has broken all the 'rules' when it comes to building startups. They even took it a step further, relying heavily on word of mouth instead of traditional sales and marketing to drive interest. Yet their continued success is proof you can build a large, innovative company from anywhere in the world very efficiently.
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