Infographic of the week: 20 reasons why start-ups fail

Given that that a whopping 70% of businesses cease operation within the first five years, let's take a look at just what goes sideways for the also-rans and highlight some of the things the little guys get wrong too often.

These days, rather, it’s all about building that world-beating, headline-grabbing start-up. As a country we want to build ‘em, flick ‘em and walk away. We’re used to stories about high growth, big wins and overnight success.

But we all know that’s the headlines, not the reality, right? Given that that 10% of small businesses fail in the first year, and a whopping 70% of businesses cease operation within the first five years, maybe it’s time we came back down to earth a little.

Why do so many of these young businesses fail and so few succeed?  What are the mechanisms that bring success and what are the conditions that conspire against us and lead to failure? And how can we apply those principles to our own businesses?

This infographic from Forbes may offer something of a guide/cautionary tale. From pricing issues to market need, burnout to networking, the below graphic paints a vivid picture of the also-rans and highlights some of the things that little guys too often get wrong. 


Idealog has been covering the most interesting people, businesses and issues from the fields of innovation, design, technology and urban development for over 12 years. And we're asking for your support so we can keep telling those stories, inspire more entrepreneurs to start their own businesses and keep pushing New Zealand forward. Give over $5 a month and you will not only be supporting New Zealand innovation, but you’ll also receive a print subscription and a copy of the new book by David Downs and Dr. Michelle Dickinson, No. 8 Recharged (while stocks last).