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