It was year 2012; my first experience with a very early stage startup in London. This was also my first ever encounter with the lean startup principles in action with regards to product release. And to be honest, it scared the hell out of me at first.
When I observed the process of product-rollout at my startup, I used to find myself silently cringing at the way they would roll out every week (almost religiously). I cringed not because they made it a point to roll out the product iteratively and regularly but because if I were the product owner, I would die of a heart attack if I were to roll out the product in a seemingly “less perfect” shape.
Most of us would have read ‘The Lean Startup’ by Eric Ries by now. But how many of us, actually put it into practice? And when I say this, I specifically point out towards the first time entrepreneurs.
After all, we (people who hail from IT services background) are taught to test the code thoroughly until no bug is found; until the product looks decently perfect. But God! That’s where most of us go wrong because the IT services projects environment is so fundamentally different from digital products which form the core of the startups.
Also, the more perfection obsessed people find a hard time relating with the concepts of “Being lean” because imperfection to them is synonymous with “disastrous”.
I have seen people especially from non-IT background get trapped into this paranoia of not releasing a basic product. They will be ready to pump in more and more money out of fear only to perhaps realize (when they take their product to market) that most features were uncalled for and they spent time & money unnecessarily on those features which no one cares for. This leads to unnecessary delays, a dip in your motivation and inhibits your own market and product learning as in the digital industry, one never learns about the product without the product. By which I mean, if you don’t have a working product, it’s impossible to make any assumptions or pin point the market adoption for the product.