There’s an urban myth that states that 90% of startups fail.  Even though this isn’t necessarily true and this percentage has been criticized by many as inaccurate, part of this statement remains true. A rather high number of startups doesn’t succeed. Even if at the end, we only remember the ones that made it, there’s a significant amount that didn’t make it through the challenges they had to face.

It is estimated that in most industries 50% of startups stop their operations after 4 years, while some of the major causes for that are managerial inefficiency, lack of financial and business modeling, poor product and marketing, lack of growth strategy.

In my encounter with tens of Panda’s trainers, coaches and consultants the last few months I’ve been told by many the same thing: “Startups have the passion but they lack the business processes and expertise".

Startups have the passion but they lack the business processes and expertise

That is one major reason why only 50% make it to 4 years, 10% are considered real success, while only really few make a breakthrough.

Of course, there are other factors, but considering that some major factors are the ones mentioned above, what is it that training and external expertise can actually offer to your startup?

If you think about it, it’s quite clear:

1. Accessing and capitalizing on the needed knowledge

External expertise and consulting can help startups to build solutions and processes by capitalizing on the knowledge and guidance that experts in the field can offer. Talking with a lot of  Panda’s service providers that are experts in the field of startups and have often supported more than 100 startups, to form their processes, create their business and financial modelling, set their growth strategy, I hear a lot that this is a process “very much needed” since “it can turn out being a major determinant of a startup’s ultimate success


Access to knowledge can turn out being a major determinant of startup's success

2. Acquiring the needed skills

Training can help startups obtain skills, that not only are considered vital in the business world but will help them carry out their processes in a more efficient and successful way. Being part of an ever changing environment startup teams are required to adapt, change and update their skills rapidly and constantly. That’s exactly where training comes in and can be of benefit for them.

3. Building the path to your goal and vision

On top of that, coaching can help entrepreneurs and their teams own and build their way to getting where they have envisioned with clarity on their purpose and goals. The excitement and energy that startup teams start with can easily end up in confusion by the overwhelming amount of information they receive daily. In that sense, it is essential, that they are able to distinguish and own their vision, path, and purpose at any given point. A recent ICF report, in fact, showed that companies that have executive coaching for the top management team perform 7 times better than companies that don’t.


It is essential that startups are able to distinguish and own their vision, path, and purpose at any given point

If these are some of the most important benefits, why is it that startups often don’t invest in training and external expertise?

Lack of or not structured HR departments in startups is exactly what makes it hard for them to invest both money and time in training, coaching and consulting most of the time. But, if one looks deeper into the matter, what ROI would that actually have for them?

What if, at the end, the passion, talent and energy of startups would be combined with the knowledge, experience and expertise of trainers, coaches and consultants? What would the result and the success rate for startups then be?

Panda has currently over 250+ service providers in the field of training, coaching and consulting, a significant amount of which have their expertise and focus on startups. You can find out more at