A startup isn’t about size, it about extreme uncertainty. Startup = experiment.
The measure of innovation is the rate of validated learning. In fact, the best way to achieve sustainable profit is validated learning.
Validated learning is THE NUMBER ONE OBJECTIVE.
Only borrow big money if it’s the best way to pursue validated learning, otherwise it’s just a distraction.
Most startups fail. General management (the sort of management taught on MBAs) fails.
Traditional management is not the way things have to be done. It was “invented” by Frederick Winslow Taylor in 1911 (to address the problems of a bygone era). His ideas are so pervasive it’s hard for people to conceive that there are alternatives. It’s summed up brilliantly by this excellent 3 minute video (from another author).
In the Q&A session, one person said that The Lean Startup sounded a lot like “trial and error”. The author agreed but pointed out that what it’s called isn’t important. The important thing is if people do it or not, and largely “trial and error” is undervalued. They don’t teach it in (business) school.
This 15 minute video is the bible for trial and error: Trial, error and the God complex (by Tim Harford, a journalist for the FT).
Lean Startup links:
Where you at Lean Startup? What did you think? Leave a comment!