“If you are not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.” – Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn Founder.
Build, Measure, Learn; these are the key steps in the Lean Start-Up. It centres on refining a great business idea and discovering the best possible probability for its success.
Eric Ries, owner of the Lean Start-Up trademark and service mark, is an American entrepreneur and author of the New York Times bestseller: “The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Business”. The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Business.
As noted by Nadine Hocter, a finalist of the ORT JET Eureka 2015 Competition who attended the Lean Start-Up as part of the competition, “For me, being able to attend the business boot camp and the Lean Start-up was already a win…I really enjoyed the classes…”I loved being around other entrepreneurs and being able to talk shop with other business owners… it gave me the tools to progress in the competition.”
‘Lean’ in this context is derived from ‘Lean Manufacturing’ and is geared towards learning which activities in a start-up create value. The program delves into how to increase the odds of success as an entrepreneur, so that valuable time is not wasted on meaningless activities. It takes a scientific approach to entrepreneurship to build a minimum viable product (MVP); a set of initial conditions that could be tested and proven to customers of where future success may lie. This works for businesses selling to early adopters prior to mainstream customers. Mostly every business is like this initially.
Dave McClure, an entrepreneurand angel investor based in San Francisco calls it a New Management Paradigm of the century (a specific set of theories that allow scientists to do experiments productively). Dave founded and runs the business accelerator 500 Startups. They have invested in over 1,500 companies across 50+ countries.
Another way to measure is ‘pivot’, meaning a change in strategy without a change in vision, and is basically double-checking a great idea. The Lean Start-Up is putting a hypothesis to a falsifiable test, as opposed to market research where one can go into a focus group and leave with the impression you are right even if you are wrong due to ‘ambiguous data and imperfect tools’. The Lean Start-Up method essentially relies on conducting small experiments and getting real-world feedback based upon facts, to find what works for entrepreneurs and what doesn’t.
The programme is not about guaranteed success, it is about improving probabilities.
More Eureka participants benefitted greatly from the classes:
“The classes were amazing…we were sent out the office to pitch to people which was terrifying, but was the exact point the Lean Start-up was trying to teach…you don’t need a product to try to sell something. You need a vision and a good enough pitch to believe in that vision.” – Wayne Gluckman, Eureka 2015 winner.
“The Lean Start-Up probably was the highlight of that whole competition (Eureka)…It allowed you to analyze your idea with honesty and integrity…that’s actually why I entered the competition” – Anthony Wald, Eureka 2015 winner.
The excellent experiences and feedback have inspired ORT JET to offer a Lean Start-Up course sponsored by Deloitte. On 26-27 February 2017, 30 participants will have the golden opportunity to attend a full, 2-day Lean Start-Up training course.
ORT JET Mentor Michael Harf (Owner, Aquaspresso), will be facilitating the course. Due to limited space, applicants will be selected based on certain criteria which will be included in the application form. The training requires participants to have their own business ideas to use as a “case study”, forming the framework within which the learning will take place. Participants will have the opportunity to refine their plans and to “leave the building” to pick up on the crucial skills one needs to push their idea and vision. Participants will have the experience of pitching to potential investors.
The sign-up cost of the course is R200.
Please REGISTER HERE for your place.
Application forms will be sent to you.
Deadline for application submission is 5 February.