As a female and more mature person entering the startup world it certainly has been an experience. The startup world is exclusively used to describe the first stage of creating a technology business. What I have learnt is been similar to a younger male or female member of a startup, the only difference being they have the world in front of them. Get the start up right and you'll be set up for life.
These are the 6 key things that I have considered in the journey to where I am now.
No matter how good an idea is, it is just that, an idea. Unless you have the courage to jump in with a pot of gold to turn it into a product and then into a business. But make sure it's a good idea. And research the hell out of it.
If you haven't got that pot of gold, then you have to convince people to share theirs. There are two ways to do this - proven metrics or confidence. Preferably have both. When you do get money be lean with it. Make it last as long as you can. Spend it in the right ways. Technology businesses take longer to monetize as you test hypotheses and evolve your market fit.
Build a feisty, well qualified team around you, including employees and advisors. Know your weaknesses and listen to friends talking about their friends who are driven, are good communicators and could fill the missing links. Headhunt and bide your time until you get the best.
The startup space is a hard slog, it is like working in the wilderness. The language is different, the dynamics are different. The sooner you and your team get amongst like minded people and network the quicker you'll understand the language and the process that will get you from the idea to the Twitter IPO.
5. Mind the Shop Front
Having a website business is like having a shop front in the middle of the desert. Unless you have people passing by, you're not going to sell anything. SEO and marketing strategy is critical. And it costs a lot of money. Refer back to points 2 and 3. :)
6. Family and Friends
Be prepared for an emotional journey, the ride is easier if you have supportive family and/or friends. Take time off to be together, don't neglect them. Believe me this is harder than you could ever imagine.
Good luck, enjoy the journey, I'm rooting for you. If you need support, get in touch.