Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Startup Leadership Program: Session 3 | Lean Startup

Boy !!

This was by far the most engaging, involving, mind twisting & thought provoking sessions. Testing your hypothesis is like putting your own beliefs on the line of fire. Your vulnerabilities are exposed, your hypothesis are thrown out of the window, you scream in agony deep down inside. People are bewildered at your false sense of hope on your flawed hypothesis and some even convey their sympathy. 

One of the fellows even told me "Buddy!! You need a Eureka! moment!" It was said with a mild tone of condescension and bit of sympathy.But maybe he had a point.
At the end of the day I felt a deep sense of relief that that I had taken this test at the same time I thought - What next !! How & Where do I start again? 

Well, I think what has happened after this session is that I am very clear on the set of questions, I need to get answered. The coming days I will be working to find the answers. Few I have started to get by talking to few practitioners and stakeholders in the ecosystem.

As, Ash Maurya calles them the WHAT | WHO | HOW questions: 

WHAT: Problem


1. What are the top 3 problems you are trying to solve?

WHO: Customer


1. Who has the problem?

2. Who is the economic buyer?

3. Who are the influencers?

4. How important is this problem to the customer : must-have, nice-to-have?

5. How do they address this problem today?

HOW: Product/Market


1. How do you solve this problem for the customer?

2. How big is this market?

3. How will your product get to your customer?

4. How will you drive demand?

5. How will you make money?
i) Cost of Customer Acquisition
ii) Life Time Value of Customer
iii) Gross Margin

I congratulate all the other fellows i.e. Ashish, Vinay & Tushar who dared to put their hypothesis on the line of fire and got interesting insights on their startups.

It takes courage to do this & the key is to take the salient feedback from the session and think it through. At the same time avoid the noise (not all feedback needs to be taken into action) and focus on the questions which are important at this point of time in our startups.

Godspeed !!

Please let me know your thoughts, comments, inputs on this. Did you found this article useful?

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