Startup entrepreneur Scott Sohr brings more than 15 years of startup business experience to his position as the president of STS Ventures in Nashville, Tennessee. Startup businesses to which Scott Sohr’s company has provided incubation services include Built Technologies, an enterprise technology firm that develops collaboration and administration software. Built Technologies received a Growth Stage Company of the Year Award during the Nashville Technology Council’s (NTC) 8th Annual NTC Awards in 2017.
The NTC Awards celebrates technological innovation through the recognition of the region’s most prominent tech leaders and their contributions to Nashville’s technology community. Recipients include companies, developers, teams, and community volunteers that make the city a destination for technological creativity and innovation. Furthermore, their technological innovations contribute to the growth and prosperity of Middle Tennessee.
Awards are distributed in 14 categories that incorporate commendations for individuals, teams, and companies. Individual awards include Data Scientist of the Year and Community Leader of the Year, and company awards encompass Technology Company of the Year and Early Stage Company of the Year. One company will also receive designation as the Technology Company of the Year.
A business executive with over a decade of experience in the real estate development sector, Scott Sohr serves as the president of STS Ventures, a startup incubator dedicated to the support of early-phase companies based in Nashville, Tennessee. Through his work with STS Ventures, Scott Sohr focuses on fueling the success of startups in a wide range of industries, including technology, real estate, renewables, and healthcare.
While research suggests that as many as 9 out of every 10 startups will fail, those companies that do manage to survive are the ones that avoid making the following three mistakes in the early phases of operation:
1. Offering a product that is not widely needed or desired
Companies that seek to produce an innovative product but fail to perform adequate market research before charging ahead with a project rarely, if ever, succeed. In order to gain market share, a company must offer a product or process that demonstrably improves upon an existing model.
2. Following a leader who lacks management skills
An entrepreneur may have great ideas and a strong vision, but his or her talents may not extend to being a capable leader for a growing company. Entrepreneurs who develop successful startups recognize when they have reached the limits of their abilities in this area and outsource the role to allow themselves to focus on the parts of the business that they know the best.
3. Being adverse to change
At its core, the most important thing that a successful startup can be is flexible. Financial circumstances, customer demand, and industry trends are always subject to sudden change, and rigid startups that don’t embrace adaptability will never outperform the competition.
The co-founder of Health Cost Solutions, Elmington Capital Group, and Stonegate Land, Scott Sohr works in a number of industries, from healthcare and fintech to real estate. However, his primary professional focus revolves around leading STS Ventures. Scott Sohr serves as the president of STS Ventures and oversees the company’s startup incubation operations.
Joining a startup incubator provides startups with invaluable resources and support and helps them grow significantly faster. However, it’s important to find the right incubator for your company to ensure you reap all the benefits.
In most situations, the process of finding the right incubator starts with completing plenty of research. Ideally, you should research everything you can about an incubator, from the industries it serves to the mentoring services it offers. Make sure every potential incubator meets your startup’s needs and that it provides experienced and knowledgeable support within your field. Referrals are a great way to start off this process, but you can also complete research without them.
Further, look into an incubator’s previous startups. Doing so helps you see what industries an incubator has experience with and provides you with a clearer idea of an incubator’s success rates. This also gives you a better idea of a particular incubator’s value. You want to choose an incubator that provides the most value for the price you are willing to pay.
Once you have a few options available, you can focus more on getting accepted by an incubator. This involves making sure your startup is established enough and that your company has a clear history and story behind it. You must also be sure that your startup has already established its fundamentals and that the services it provides are beneficial to the market.
Scott Sohr is the chairman of Built Technologies, a Nashville, Tennessee-based company that focuses on providing construction lenders with a platform that allows them to borrow funding easily online. In addition to his work with Built Technologies, Scott Sohr is the president of STS Ventures, a company that serves as an incubator for successful startups in areas like fintech, healthcare, renewables, and finance.
A startup incubator is a company that provides a collective physical workplace for multiple startups in the same location. The goal of an incubator is to provide these early-stage companies with the resources they need to fuel growth. A company typically can stay within an incubator’s space until it has grown in scale to a size big enough to merit its own location.
In addition to a physical place to work, startups that work with incubators are also usually mentored by experienced investors and entrepreneurs involved with the organization, and may also secure funding from these investors. New entrepreneurs in these business relationships also may gain access to a wider and more accomplished range of business partners, as more established technology and media companies may feel more comfortable working with a newly-created startup backed by an incubator than with a small firm working to find success on its own.