How Startup Entrepreneurs Can Ensure Cash Flow While Working with Large Organizations

At Interapt, we are a fast-growth technology startup, so we forgo the layers of decision makers. Some days we make decisions on the fly. That’s why we’re faster to market with our products, and why we are even faster in evolving our technology products. And that’s why clients like the Pentagon like working with us.

When we first met with the Pentagon, it was enlightening. They explained that they liked working with smaller companies because they have a track record of success with them. We attribute that success to the agility of small business — smaller companies have faster technology breakthroughs and faster speed to market. The military budget is under immense scrutiny, so they are vested in doing their due diligence and working with proven vendors who deliver success on time and on budget.

As an entrepreneur, the flip side in working with leviathan companies and organizations like the Pentagon is often the waiting game. We might show them a product in January that they don’t approve until August. In that eight-month span of time, there are newer, better technologies to replace what we showed them previously, and we have to start the lengthy process all over again.

As an entrepreneur, there are cash flow-friendly ways to approach working with larger companies. Once you’ve signed an NDA, offer to do a joint venture or collaborate on an R&D project rather than pitching the company on a final solution. An approach like this ensures cash flow while you’re developing your technology, whereas pitching a solution for final sale will result in a check, but you will be waiting around for a few fiscal quarters.

Small businesses that work with large organizations don’t have to suffer from cash flow issues. There are different options available. It’s just a matter of communicating with your contacts at the organization, and finding a solution that works best for everyone.

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