In this book, Eric Ries proposes a model for managing something that traditionally has been seen as somewhat unmanageable: an entrepreneurial startup business. It’s a good read, even if you’re not in a startup business, but want to use the same ideas for managing a new project, product launch or service.
His core idea is that startups should focus on the customer first, and must involve the customer in every stage of the design and development process. Too many businesses create something that customers don’t want or need, and this approach solves that problem.
The single biggest idea that most people seem to take away from this book is the “minimum viable product” (or MVP). You create something you can sell, with the absolute minimum functionality that customers are willing to pay for. Then, based on the success of the MVP in the market, you create newer, better versions.
This book resonated with me because I’ve long been a fan of getting stuff out there in the market, rather than spending months and years agonising over getting it exactly right. So I liked the ideas in the book, and also found some new insights to help with future projects and products.