StartupLessonsLearned2011 at San-Francisco, 23rd of May 2011

#sllconf on Twitter,, Local Simulcasts, TwitterStreamGraphs, Collecta, flickr

Own objectives

  1. meet again Lean Startup people in Paris
  2. be involved and focused
  3. re-evaluate current ideas

Attended activities

Eric Ries: State of the Lean Startup Movement

  • to check
    • HBS MVP fund + launching tech ventures
    • BYU rsearch project
    • +=ref
  • mission of improving the success rate
  • lean startup principles
  • following the last talk watched (cf ...)
  • recall of not "can it be done?" but rather "should it be done?"
  • how many pivots can I still do?
  • pinpoints the assumptions
    • learn by transforming them to facts

What are the lessons learned from my past projects? ROI despite failures?

See WithoutNotesSeptember10#EricRies, WithoutNotesApril11#EricRies, WithoutNotesMarch11#EricRies and several others. Back to the Menu

Mitch Kapor, KEI - A Conversation with Mitch Kapor and Eric Ries

  • explaining why it worked when it did is not easy
  • difficulty of keeping up with growth
  • innovatoin as punctuated equilibrium
  • which feature will early adopter really appreciate and share around?
  • no middle ground for entrepreneurs too
    • being part of the solution or part of the problem
    • negative externalities including environment degradation taken into account
  • lean startup as a process innovation
    • managing decreasing risk by learning for the minimum cost
    • conferring an "unfair advantage"
  • "You only know if you are right or crazy in retrospect."

See TheFutureOfIdeas#MitchKapor. Back to the Menu

Votizen Case Study: How and When to Pivot

  • quick review of finance and chances of success
    • including a (nearly depressing) variance vs "classical engineer position" e.g. at Google
  • "create your own reality"
    • cf Pygmalion gift
    • lean mitigate own reality distortion field
  • lean as converting market risk to technical risk
  • pivot the statement of your BM
    • consequence of learning about your business, not just your product
  • vision-driven, not testing-driven
  • own example of iteration through 1.0 (1.1 tweaking) 2.0 3.0 4.0
    • using AARRR metrics
  • when? when you have to bounce out of the local maximum
  • how? understand the pain that is driving people to act
    • but don't flail
    • still have to learn
      • see also the Swiss AI researcher robotic ML algo discovered recently
  • seek funding for tech risk rather than market risk

See Seedea:Utopiahanalysis/Politicsoldandnew (potentially add @Votizen there too)

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Wealthfront Case Study: Continuous Deployment in an SEC-Regulated Environment

  • democratizing money managers
    • through aggregation?
  • continuous deployment, not continuous feature adding
  • screenshot of their deployment manager
  • 5 essentials (but through a loop)
    1. Culture, everybody in the company owns the quality of the code base
    2. TDD
    3. Continuous integration
    4. Immune system (with the "production pager")
    5. Continuous deployment
  • tests and test coverage have to be of quality too
    • one has to have confidence in the "green light"
  • consider starting by a small system, add pieces step by step

See Cashing (Caching?) added to Financing? before.

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Brad Smith, Intuit - A Conversation With Intuit CEO Brad Smith and Eric Ries

  • the rougher the prototype the better you are
  • checking for regulations on projects
  • asking the right questions at the right time
  • run experiments as a whole culture
    • not personal, the point is the outcome
  • build Just-In-Time not just in case
  • "a genius with a thousands helper does not scale"
  • love metric
    • "what is the #1 reason the person is hiring the product?"
      • mention of Clay Christensen
  • have a management and business model that scale

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Food on the Table One Year Later: From the Concierge Minimum Viable Product to a Scalable Business

  • grow efforts based on justified needs
  • learn first, code last
    • use paper prototype, mockups, ...
    • leaps of knowledge by talking to customers

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Case Study: "BigCo Lessons Learned - IGN Entertainment"

  • experiments culture as a bet factory
  • also with SC2 replays sponsoring

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Case Study: "The Epic Pivot - Herokuís Story"

  • conditional pathflow for production and... testing for who are the "real" users in the "end-user" targeted market
    • increasingly different
  • early success can lock on the wrong (non scalable or out of the vision?) product
    • mainly just attention
      • which should be cherished to be later on converted
  • pivot
    • from Heroku Garden to current Heroku platform

See Ruby#Heroku Back to the Menu

Design + Lean Startup = Lean UX (Case Studies: Cooper, TheLadders, LUXr NYC, SideReel)

  • understanding a person, what they need, ...
  • similarities between the UX process and the customer development process
    • flow as think/make/check
  • test in pennies, spend in dollars
    • reduce the amount of time between try and feedback linked to goals (e.g. conversion)
  • nice slide on old way (long curve of risk going up) / new way (sawtooth)
  • moving from deliverable to experience


See recently watched WithoutNotesMay11#MaryCzerwinski

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The rest will be added once recordings will be watched (had to sleep, sorry Steve :(

Steve Blank

  • ?

See WithoutNotesMay10#SteveBlank with the first mention of Startup Lessons Learned WithoutNotesJanuary11#SteveBlank, WithoutNotesSeptember10#SteveBlank, TheFourStepsToTheEpiphany Back to the Menu

Dropbox Case Study: Epic Scale One Year Later

  • ?

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Hearsay Case Study: Agile Practices Applied to Sales and Marketing

  • ?

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Case Study: IMVU, One Year Later

  • ?

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Groupon Case Study: Using Lean Startup Principles to Manage Hypergrowth

  • ?

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Closing Remarks

  • ?

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Overall remarks and conclusions

  • ironically nearly nobody from the Camping?
  • this event and all the other Dojo, Meetups, ... maybe show that being in the physical hub still matters even at the age of the Internet and "simultcasts"
  • between market studies, customer development, designer research it seems it to be all about theory of mind

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Other reviews or coverage

  • nothing yet

To do

  1. improve Template
  2. add map data (:ola-point lat= lon= text='':)
  3. integrate
    1. BusinessModelGeneration, LeanThinking, TheArtOfLeanSoftwareDevelopment, VentureCapitalAndTheFinanceOfInnovation, ...
      1. TheTinkerersAccomplice on the importance of tinkering in nature too
    2. LeanStartupEtBusinessModel, LeanStartupEtBusinessModelDecembre10, MBE01#SerieStart, ...
    3. WithoutNotesSeptember10#AshMaurya
  4. official sites
  5. related Quora topics
  6. check
    1. consider it for Seedea:Oimp/CloudArbitrage
  7. share LeanUX to Mao, eventually to @Cybunk