The Company is also a process of self-discovery in which a lot can go wrong. Miriam Rupp, standing here in the picture, founded the agency Mashup Communications at the age of only 24 and made a few mistakes in the process. In the founder's report, she tells what's going to happen with the next one Foundation would do differently.


Start-up as a learning process

After my first two years as an employee, I was drawn to self-employment. That's how I ended up joining Mashup Communications, a corporate PR agency from the United States, at the age of 24 Online– and mobileIndustry, founded. I was full of energy, but at the same time I had this Age wisdom has not yet been eaten with spoons.

After four years now, Mashup Communications is up and running with a ten-member Team on stable legs. The way there consisted of a lot of learning by doing, some of which I would do the same way and other things completely different the next time I founded my company. A small bouquet of things that I will avoid in the future and that I would like to pass on to other potential founders:

1. In the legal form of beginning great and think of the future

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Even if it's mine from the start Objective was a Company To set up with several employees, I started as a freelancer, i.e. sole proprietorship, which also seems obvious in a service profession.

With increasing size and complexity, the foundation of a GmbH was on the agenda. Especially if, as in our case, the entry of another business partner is also included, in the worst case the change of legal form can turn out to be a time-consuming, nerve-racking and money-consuming step. When it comes to the legal form, you should therefore take into account your long-term vision and the corresponding one from the outset Choice meet directly for founding.

2. Service providers as long-term partners directly to the start

The exciting thing about my first own company is that the horizon of knowledge expands exponentially, incomparable to anything I've done before Study or got a job. So I deliberately invested a lot of voluntary apprenticeship time in order to benefit from learning new things Background about website design, Taxes, Contracts, Finance, acquisition, pricing, etc. directly in practice.

Even if I still benefit from it today, I would have some Problems If I could have avoided this do-it-yourself approach, I would have left certain areas to the experts from the start.

Also at the selection Corresponding service providers should be approached with great care in order to be able to benefit from a long-term partnership. Although, as a PR service provider, we often find out for ourselves how many Ask you have to face up to potential new customers, we ourselves are often just the pragmatic first product followed for own service providers. Today I know that with more research we could have avoided some disappointments.

3. Always stay fluent

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Luckily, Mashup Communications was profitable after just a short time. So much for the theory. Because there was a time when several unfortunate situations came at once. Outstanding invoice receipts, unforeseeable larger ones expenditure and the fact that, due to the delay in forming a limited liability company, we are temporarily deprived of part of our money could not access, led our solvency in tight difficulties.

An extremely critical moment, despite the certainty that funds will soon be pouring in again. Luckily our bank was very helpful and flexible and the problem was solved after a month. Nevertheless, since then we have stabilized our liquidity with overdraft facilities and credit cards, so that today larger or smaller investments and expenses can be made without a stomach ache, even if the customers should take their time paying their bills.

4. Separate friendship and business

With my current business partner, Nora Feist, I have the perfect balance of friendship and Business: A former colleague whose Power I knew and trusted her, but she was more of a good acquaintance at the time she joined. Our friendship has grown mainly through our cooperation.

It is different when you bring close friends as employees on the boat, which I have made mostly bad experiences. So extreme in a case that it ended up fatal to both the company and the friendship. On the other hand, even at the beginning, through intense collaboration and our unique team cohesion, I was often misled to cross the line between friends and colleagues.

Even though luckily we all get along very well privately, we should be right now Executives build a healthy barrier, especially when it comes to their personal sensitivities or private crises, so that professional decisions can be made and accepted impartially.

5. Never rest on the laurels

After two years of intensive work in the start-up phase, I came to the point where I wanted to allow myself to think about myself because of the company's success. This was followed by a very exciting year with many trips. Despite the fact that the company's condition hadn't deteriorated during that time, I would say that we missed some growth potential.

It is certainly not an easy task to be a healthy one for most founders Work-Life-Balance to find. However, going from one extreme to the other is definitely not the way to go. Even if this time of absence helped me, new ones Motivation, Energy and ideas to collect, it is all the more important for me today and for my company to always remain vigilant, aspiring and innovative.

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