Scale up in Amsterdam

Most of the world’s major companies began as startups. With the right support, and in the right environment, startups can blossom into big-name brands. In Amsterdam, innovative enterprises are in the right place – there are a multitude of networks to get involved in, a highly skilled talent pool and opportunities for mentorship and investment to take you from startup to scale-up when the time is right.

Talent is everything

You need the right team behind you to scale. There’s a tendency among entrepreneurs to want to do it all yourself, but leveraging ideas and knowledge from people around you is an important step in growing your business. Aside from carefully selecting staff with a certain skill base, you need to ensure that your employees personify the culture of your organisation. Companies in Amsterdam tend to have a collaborative, non-hierarchical structure, which lends itself well to open discussions and new ways of doing things.

Focus on investment

Capital makes the business world go round, and it’s usually the factor holding companies back from their next major milestone. Most major businesses are not self-funded, and being able to focus on procuring the right type of investment for your next move is paramount to your startup successfully scaling. If you’re busy running other facets of your business (and rightly so), partnering with a financing expert who can proritise your company’s growth can get you much closer to your goals. Amsterdam’s accelerator programmes are a great place to start.

Raise your profile

You know about branding, your marketing strategy is in full force, but have you considered your own public profile? As the world moves beyond B2B and B2C, customers and investors are increasingly interested in the humans behind the brand. Creating an ‘about us’ page on your website that truly reflects you, getting involved in networking opportunities and curating your LinkedIn presence for yourself as a founder (as well as your brand) makes a huge difference when moving beyond a startup.

Automate and simplify

Taking a critical look at the ways your business can simplify processes frees you up to focus on the bigger picture. A crucial part of becoming a scale-up involves investing in technology that makes better use of your time. At a basic level, this is the time to outsource or use automating software for payroll, invoicing, credit control and other back office operations, but you should also seek out Amsterdam’s latest innovations that can help you work smarter.

Learn from successes

Keeping a close eye on Amsterdam’s startup scene and connecting with other entrepreneurs in the city – even your competitors - gives you endless insights to apply to your own business. There’s a collaborative spirit among Amsterdam’s entrepreneurs and co-creation across industries has led to some of the most successful innovations. Take the time to scope out successful startups and follow in their footsteps towards scaling success.