What would you say are hard for startups to do at an early stage?
That's easy: quality feedback from the target market. Under this broad complaint are: finding them, getting their time, & writing good questions. Finding them is a bear.
Get access to people who have already gone from startup to exit. It's just not experience most people have. Most people work for a company that scaled a long time ago. Without this experience/knowledge, it is really hard to make good decisions.
Building a Team
Startup pain points:
1. Running out of money - manage your cash like it is the air you breathe and don't wait until it becomes an emergency before you cut back expenses or raise more cash.
2. Firing one of the launch team - Someone, or more than one, will not fit and you cannot take long before you exit them as the lack of fit will affect the entire team.
3. Making the stars your immediate goal - While your goal should be world changing and bringing in big bucks, don't lose sight of the fact that it's the little wins that show the team you're are the right track that really build momentum and help everyone on the team achieve at their highest level. If you don't get the little wins, unless you are very lucky or have the absolute right contacts, you will go without enough sales for a long time.
4. Making a leap to the next level - You will hit cash flow positive but you are far from your goals. You will need to make the decision to risk everything again and make the investments, with or without outside money, to jump to the next level - so you go back to Item #1 and start again.
5. Knowing when to sell the company - You cannot imagine how many entrepreneurs I've known who have turned down a huge payday because they thought they could get 5x or 10x more and have soon after fallen flat on their faces and closed shop, usually because competition overcame them or the market made an abrupt change.
Hope that helps! Tom