8 insights & tips after 4 times mentoring at Lean Startup Machine

I collected some insights which I reflected after mentoring at LSM Amsterdam, about

  1. Offering Options
  2. Too many options
  3. Targeting end users
  4. Targeting companies
  5. Products & Solutions
  6. Fake for early validation
  7. One-time transactions
  8. How to win LSM

1.     Offering Options

·       Offering options when a team is stuck usually does not help. The pictures which you created in your own mind based on your own experience are not easily transferred

Ø  What had helped with the team which wanted to bring happiness to employees was to take a short break and then dig through the data they got from the interviews to find a hint for a direction with a problem worth solving

2.     Too many options

·       Mind the cognitive bias, when offering more than two options, the chance rises and rises to stick with the default which is in this case "do nothing / do not decide at all"

·       In my experience this is especially difficult to overcome, if someone had a preformed solution, I saw this several times

Ø  Doing a thinking experiment to think about something totally different or to introduce a quite different constraint helps to get someone unstuck; Ask “what if” or “how might we”

3.     Targeting end users

·       In my experience these teams have big problems to validate the problem.

·       Even if an experiment is validated, the data is often simply irrelevant, because it does not bring you further; there is no real problem.

Ø  However doing customer interviews usually still lead you to real problems, if you are open enough to pivot there.

4.     Targeting companies

·       Finding the target segment on a weekend seems to be difficult, therefore teams often start with validating the end user side

Ø  Do not initially neglect the business side. If you even can find only one from your target segment: aim for a Concierge MVP to start learning!

5.     Products & Solutions

·       In my experience teams usually think to big, think already in solutions, and therefore shy to validate the business side

Ø  Think in terms of service, not product solution and try to validate the service offering, even if slightly outside the target segment for learning.

Ø  Concierge: Do not sell bread, charge for a service delivering bread

6.     Fake for early validation

·       The right match of a products and buyers on a marketplace might be difficult to generate on a weekend

Ø  Example: Offer the right discounts for early adopters immediately instead of thinking about a platform for offering and selling discounts. Fake real discounts to learn fast.

7.     One-time transactions

·       Most teams, no matter if targeting end users or companies, try to sell something in a one-time transaction. This might not be enough for a sustainable business model.

Ø  Offer a product or service which generates recurring revenues by cutting a share of the transaction

8.     How to win LSM

Ø  B2B / B2B2C rules, IMHO.

Ø  Offer a product or service to bring buyers and sellers together, create a win-win(-win) situation and ideally collect money from all sides of the market.

Ø  The 3 teams from LSM Munich 2014, which had collected more than 500 Euros, had a business model to bring buyers and sellers together.

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Kommentare: 3
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Nils Bernert, Agile Coach & LeanStartup enthusiast, valtech.de
Nils Bernert, Agile Coach & LeanStartup enthusiast, valtech.de

Next Appearances

  • ? 05.12.14-07.12.14 LSM Berlin
  • 26.01.15 - 30.01.15 OOP Munich 2015 (Workshop)

Past Appearances

  • 09.08.13 - 11.08.13 LeanStartupMachine (Mentoring)
  • 21.08.13 Stoos MUC: Coaching Dojo (Organizer)
  • 06.09.13 Lean Agile Scrum Zürich (Workshop)
  • 23.09.13 - 25.09.13 Scrum Gathering Paris (Workshop)
  • 03.02.13 - 07.02.13 OOP München (Workshop)
  • 21.02.14 - 24.02.14 Play4Agile (Unconference)
  • 08.03.14 Leancamp Stuttgart (Open Space)
  • 21.03.14 - 22.03.14 Design Thinking Camp München (Barcamp)
  • 30.06.14 - 01.07.14 Scrum Day Stuttgart (Workshop & Presentation)
  • 01.08.14 - 03.08.14. Lean Startup Machine Munich 2014 (Organizer & Mentor)
  • 06.09.14 Javascript Coding Dojo Munich
  • 30.10.14 - 31.10.14 Business Model Generation Masterclass, London
  • 31.10.14 - 02.11.14 LSM Amsterdam (Mentor & Speaker)