Chunky startups
Monday, February 7, 2011 at 09:30AM
CampbellM in Cut yourself a break, Feedback, customer development, lean startups, minimum viable product

Maybe this is a lady thing but I spend far too much time worrying about being fat.  

Then I started an internet company and all of a sudden I’ve got to spend a bunch of time worrying about being “lean.” In case you’ve been in Siberia (no offense) the last couple years, lean means build a minimum viable product (MVP) using as little money as possible, get your product out there, get feedback, iterate, repeat.  Here’s the thing: we started lean, put an MVP out in June, then had a breakdown in our engineering team that led to a regrouping and planned re-release that’s coming in March.  Yes, ten months later.  In my book that’s not a short iteration.  

We had to build the whole backend again from scratch.  Which means, we are building the MVP (again) plus several features I know we need based on months of learning.  See, that’s the awesome thing.  While our site was stalled out, I spent day after day talking to potential customers.  It’s kind of painful not to release the MVP again, but it would further push out our v2 release date. And we know what people think about our current site. This development cycle will be two months long. That’s hardly lean.  But it’s not really fat either.  It’s perhaps a bit chunky.  And I’m OK with that.

Pass the pizza.

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