"The Lean Startup" vs Spaghetti Sauce

Our investors suggested I read “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries.  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=thzopr-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=0307887898

I’m glad they did.  The book is well written and filled with examples from either the authors own experience or companies operating under similar circumstances.  All suggestions came from practical experience and are immediately relevant to my current experience as a start-up.  If you’re starting a company, or running a project with vaguely defined goals, it will be relevant to you too.

Overall this book is really about applying the scientific process to business; specifically the product development cycle.  This book helps you understand what to measure and why.  Although the focus of the book is mostly on new businesses the process presented could be used by project managers to create small scope projects in existing organizations…  Assuming they can get autonomy.  As my Project Management professor said “Get permission in writing.”

In a way Malcolm Gladwell: Choice, Happiness and Spaghetti Sauce is a better argument for a lean startup in established organizations then the book Lean Startup is.  There are very similar themes running through this book and the presentation.  Gladwell’s discussion of large companies finding the perfect products through metrics driven iteration might sell the strategy, while The Lean Startup elaborates on the specific tactics which might otherwise scare an established corporate machine.

If you’re an entrepreneur starting a new venture, of just about any kind, giving The Lean Startup a read will get you started off on the right foot.  Your scope will shrink, your costs will decrease, and your chance of success will increase if you take his lessons to heart because you will realize that bloated scope, high costs and high risk aren’t necessary for making big changes in today’s world.  Iterative design fits in very well with the work of paper prototyping, and right before (and during for best results) all the marketing that needs to happen.  But really Lean Startup is a methodology for how to behave as a company in the modern world.

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