Starting a Startup, still in concept and idea phase, How to put what progress/accomplishments on resume?

While I am working this project, how can I put this on a resume as project? -I am currently working with a group and we just have written up a business plan. I have started a brief market research campaign. -This is my first serious attempt at starting a business and never had any experience with developing a marketing plan before or business plan. So this is college without grades and paying tuition. -The accomplishments that pertain to me in this project: -Learned a lot about starting a business in general -I have fundamental understanding in starting a marketing campaign thanks to the internet - Developed more into a leader. - How to compare competitors and improve on what they are doing into what we are doing - I have found that I am awesome researcher and think very analytically. Overall: this is still in progress but still want to add this to the list to show creativity and being a self starter and I can stand up to any challenge. Trying to figure out what this can do for an employer. Suggestions? #thanks!:)


This is a good route to take and the same one I took after leaving undergrad. An MBA is for the birds, anyways ;)

First things first, take credit where credit is due! You're a founder now it sounds like, and you're working on your first MVP I'm guessing (hoping?) as well. At the very least, get together some sketches, etc... as well. You'll definitely want a prototype in order to feel "whole."

So, more importantly, just list this startup's name as a part of your career in your resume as you would when working for any other company. When asked, be completely truthful, and let your exuberance and fascination with being a self starter shine through. These few factors alone will signal to any future employer that you would be a valuable asset to have on their team, but you may find that you enjoy working for yourself a bit too much before then ;)

Have you setup a corporation or LLC yet? Or are you using a partnership (assuming this is all U.S. based)? Once you have your business' infrastructure in place, things will definitely feel more official as well. Also, be sure to incorporate NOW rather than later to avoid any major legal headaches.

Feel free to message me any time if you'd like to chat further.


Answered 10 years ago

Great question!
If creating a startup, why would you need a resume?
For now let's assume you're looking for a side job and want to use this as experience...
Focus not in what thresholds you might have accomplished but the route you took to get there. For example, describe your ability to effectively communicate a problem and direct a team to develop and implement a solution. Or the number of sales you have generated for the startup ahead of expectations, web design abilities, etc... Unless is a well known brand no one cares if you simply list: "launched a start up company that did x" what recruiters want to see is the applicable value you bring to their company for your applicable job description...

-Humberto Valle

Answered 10 years ago

I'll have to echo Humberto Valle when he asks why you need a resume at all when you are starting a startup. This doesn't really make sense and, from an employers perspective, a red flag that says at best you are temporary, at worst you are distracted. I would take a hard look at what you are doing and decide if you want to start something or work for someone. Then, read Humberto Valle's advice on focusing on the outcomes you've achieved while helping with the startup and move on.

Startups aren't part time IMO.

Answered 10 years ago

I think business plans are great if you are building a business with a known and validated business model (like a coffee shop, restaurant, retail store, etc.) But if you are building a startup (a new business model that has not been executed successfully before), The Lean Startup ( method or the Business Model Generation ( approach are better. Steve Blank's resource, The Startup Owner's Manual ( also has some great practical steps.

While, I know you are looking at this as a theoretical educational exercise, I would encourage you to consider taking some of the steps laid out in the resources I mentioned that are practical steps towards building a real business. There is no reason you can't do these things while in school, and you might just end up with something that is valuable.

Speaking from the resume evaluation perspective, I would put more weight on a resume of someone that has done some of the actual work of building a business, rather than someone who did a mental exercise / simulation on a business.

For example:
- Did market research on the perceived need for a new product and the possibility of building a list of potential customers for the theoretical product (not that impressive and / or valuable in my opinion - this is the old school Business Plan style approach to entrepreneurship)


- Developed a new product design and pitched it to potential customers. Built website and internet marketing campaign for the new product that generated a list of 2500 customer names & email addresses who expressed interested in the product. (this is impressive and is an expression of the Lean Startup)

Here is a great article that describes the different approaches you could take and how great entrepreneurs behave:

Entrepreneurship is a hands on exercise. Jump in and go for it.

Answered 10 years ago

When I hire people, I actively search for people with side projects, either current or past.

I'm not interested in the skills they've obtained from them, I'm just searching for a "self started" or motivated person.

People who start side projects are generally more passionate and have a greater understand of the overall process of the working environment.

Just simply mention that you're motivated by starting things and building them from the ground up, and that you're currently doing that now.

Answered 10 years ago

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