“Many businesses fail because of cash flow issues,” this is one pitfall Joan Joffe warns upcoming startups against.

Joffe, who has been in the IT industry since 1960 working for companies such as Vodacom, IBM and HP, was part of the Wired Women Conference panel discussion on what it takes to make a startup concept fly.


“Manage your finances very carefully. It’s not that businesses don’t have orders and good products, but they just don’t manage business properly,” Joffe tells us in a one-on-one interview.

“One tip I would give startups to avoid this is to have a good grip on finance and understand that you can’t keep going without money behind you,” she says.

Joffe also emphasised getting your product or service out there as a key to taking your startup from one level to another. “A lot of companies don’t utilise public relations. It’s an important part of getting your product out there. It doesn’t have to be all that expensive, you have to be clever about it.”

“Create a visible market for what you are establishing, understand who your potential customer or market is, get closer to them with good products, service, information and accessibility that is pertinent to them.”

“Lastly, you need to have people in your company who are part of the vision, who buy into what you’re doing. Invest in them and just don’t be a boss with employees, be a team player,” Joffe says.

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