Don’t release crap. But also, don’t try to release the perfect product. It will be too expensive and someone will beat you to the market. On top of all of it is the fact that there is no way to know how the customer will react until they have a chance try it for themselves.
- Do enough market validation work to understand if there is pain in the market and to what extent the customer is willing to pay for relief of that pain.
- Then understand the basic customer expectations for the price they are willing to pay.
- Release a product with the most basic features that address the pain directly.
- Set up a feedback loop directly from the customers.
- Implement the feedback and iterate like crazy.
Customers will guide you to what they need and are willing to buy. And they will reward you well for asking.
The fact that somebody took a risk, got funded, hired some people and tried something is a good thing…for everybody. We need to embrace our innovators and entrepreneurs and celebrate their failures as well as their successes. A community that tolerates risk attracts more entrepreneurs and better companies.
The supreme challenge is typically not a lack of good ideas nor is it capital. It’s experienced entrepreneurial talent. You can’t gain experience without a few mistakes and at least a failure or tow. That’s when you learn the most.
Churn is good.
Hire great people, give them direction and inspiration, and then get out of their way. Highly productive, creative people do not work well when they are micromanaged. If they are not with the program, invite them off the bus early. If you, or they made a mistake in coming onboard, invite them off the bus early. The right people don’t need to be “managed”.
If you have a great idea and your company, or boss, or institution does’t get it, it’s because implementing good ideas is not what they re good at. It’s often about conformity and process. It does’t mean you don’t have a great idea.
You may just need to get away from the constraints and just do it.
Confidence is a good thing and it’s infectious. Your passion will sell your ideas… to customers, to investors, to your staff, to your community.
Honest mistakes can be forgiven but no one follows a wet noodle.
You have to have a goal. Jim Collin’s calls it a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal). It need to be big. It needs to be compelling. It needs to be attainable. This is true personally and it’s true for the business.
Choose your BHAG wisely grasshopper…
No one owes you an education. It’s YOUR responsibility. And you can’t get it all from the university. They will give you frameworks and ideas but you have to figure it out. A degree means you did it someone else’s way. You still have to find your own. Here is a short list of where to get an education in order of preference. Of course it’s my opinion but feel free to make it yours.
- The Cloud
Read Karl’s Blog – http://plusfilters.com/user/karl/
Technical people can get “analysis paralysis” when developing technology. It’s better to release early and iterate like crazy. If the problem you are solving is big enough, and it should be, then you run the risk of your competitor beating you to the marketplace. Then you have to steal their customers which is harder to do.
Don’t develop the perfect product. It will be too expensive and someone else will get there first. Develop the product that is good enough and solves the most important thing.
When the time comes to hire your first employees, choose carefully. The tendency is to hire people you like that are similar to you. Culture is important. But err on the side of skills and experience and let your people do their job. Share information. Be open and transparent. Show trust. Communicate the vision, not the method. Inspire, then get out of the way.
Read “Beyond Entrepreneurship” by Jim Collins
For all of us, our time on the planet ends the same way. You can work to satisfy some other organization’s view of the world or you can create value from your own ideas. The one common constraint is time, the most valuable resource. You get to pick.