The biggest source of waste in a startup is building something that nobody wants
Great quote that every startup entrepreneur needs to remember - “The biggest source of waste in a startup is building something that nobody wants”
One of the worst things that any entrepreneur can do is to spend many days/weeks/months/years working on their business before pitching it to a potential client. The very best thing any entrepreneur can do is to get their first sale as quickly as possible.
Getting sale #1 will validate your idea, provide you with invaluable feedback and give you the mental push you need to keep moving the business to the next level. If you wish to succeed you need to receive all this as fast as you possibly can.
Entrepreneurs need to keep in mind that they first product to market will have a large unforeseeable flaw 100% of the time… it will happen every time no matter what you do to prepare. The only way to realize this flaw is to get the product in the hands of users as quickly as possible. The users will give you the feedback you need but you first need it to get into their hands.
To make things worse the more time you spend building the initial product the larger it will inevitability. The larger it gets the more difficult it is to make changes to it. Since version 1.0 is flawed 100% of the time wouldn’t you want to make the tweaks you need before the product becomes large and unwieldy? If you wait until the product is already very refined (but in the wrong direction) your then in danger of a total rewrite… at that point you would have been better doing nothing at all and you would have been at the exact same point.
The quote was from entrepreneur Eric Ries during a presentation given at Stanford. Watch the entire presentation below.