Are You Building The Right Product?
Editor’s note: Guest contributor Eric Ries is a consultant and the author of The Lean Startup, which he will be launching at Disrupt SF on Tuesday. Follow him @ericries. I was recently asked to spend some time with an early stage startup that has a revolutionary new product. I asked them if they thought they were making their product better. Then I asked them, “How do you know?” Then I asked them this question: what would happen to the company if the entire product development team took a month off and went on vacation? In one scenario, they’ve been working overtime, putting in crazy hours, and in the other, they’d be on vacation. Most product teams don’t know if they are making their product better or worse; that’s why customers feel a twinge of fear every time they have to update or upgrade. In one of the startups I founded, we had an extended period where we were really focused on the conversion rate of new customers into paying customers (it was a freemium business model).
Related: Start-ups & Entrepreneurship
• Product building